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Free the Nats


Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan was among the politicians last weekend calling on Comcast Cable to allow the 1.3 million subscribers in the region to watch Washington National's games on their cable channels during the upcoming baseball season.

In a letter to Eastern Division president Michael Doyle, Duncan urges the company to reconsider.

"For the first time in a generation, the people of the Washington metropolitan region have a home team they can root for and they deserve the right to watch them on their local cable network," writes Duncan, one of the Democratic candidates for governor.

U.S. Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Virginia) and Maryland Del. Peter Franchot (D-Montgomery) took up the cause yesterday at RFK Stadium and said Congressional intervention might be necessary.

By Ann Marimow  |  March 27, 2006; 11:36 AM ET
Categories:  Governor  
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There are alternatives to Comcast: RCN and DirecTv. Verizon is also getting in the cable business.

Posted by: Brad | March 27, 2006 3:03 PM | Report abuse

First thought: not everyone has alternatives - if you live in Arlington, it's only Comcast, and if you live in an apartment (like I do), you can't put a dish on your building.

Second thought: it is really unfortunate the all of the Post's coverage has neglected the huge number of fans who find MASN to be a crock of... somethin'. I personally believe that the fault lies with MLB for giving the Nats' TV rights to the Orioles, a violation of every fair and free market principle out there. Maybe Members of Congress should examine how MLB lined the pockets of one of its owners with that move. Comcast isn't innocent, but MLB and the Orioles got a sweetheart deal that is ultimately really bad for the Nats. It's equivalent to the University of Maryland owning the rights to the University of Virginia's TV revenues, so every time UVA plays on TV, the money lines the Terps' pockets. It's bogus, and the Post coverage on this issue has totally ignored it (and the many fans who feel the only fair outcome is for MASN to die a quick death).

Posted by: DC Mike | March 27, 2006 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I agree completely with DC Mike. The fault lies with GREEDY Peter Angelos and MASN and MLB's capitulation to Angelos to get the Nats here in the first place.

Posted by: Doc | March 27, 2006 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Any new Nats owner should publicly rip up the MLB's sale of his team's TV rights to the Nats' closest competitor. And dare Angelos to sue him. MLB will force Angelos to step down, since they don't want to have a court (or Congress) remove Baseball's antitrust exemption. This is Selig and Angelos' fault, not Comcast.

Posted by: Larry | March 27, 2006 4:27 PM | Report abuse

See, THIS is the story that the WashPost should be writing. Angry fans willing to sacrifice their team being on TV, at least temporarily, for the long-term health of the franchise and the ethical "right," as opposed to the "wrong" that MLB created.

I'm happy to talk, give me an email address or phone number to contact and you can put me on record as a fan.

Posted by: DC Mike | March 27, 2006 5:01 PM | Report abuse

David Nakamura at and Tom Heath at cover this issue for the Post. Drop them a line.

Posted by: Phyllis Jordan | March 27, 2006 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I really wish we could see more of the Nationals on TV. I actually watched a few baseball games on TV last year for the first time since the players went on strike many years ago. The Orioles owner is the epitome of greed and he's purposely trying to hurt the Nationals. I'm glad to see politicians beside Moran are stepping up to the plate over this issue. I was finding it hard to support an issue if Moran's corrupt fingers were in the pie.

Posted by: Chris Harrison | March 28, 2006 9:16 PM | Report abuse

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