Pols Take the Field
The opening of Nationals Park this weekend gives politicians and city officials a chance to take the field, too.
Saturday's exhibition game will feature City Council Chairman Vincent Gray (D) handing over the Nats' line up card to the umpire and D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission Chairman Matthew Cutts gets to shout "Let's Play Ball!"
The commission owns the ballpark on behalf of the city and Cutts and commission CEO Gregory O'Dell have been overseeing construction in recent months.
Mayor Adrian Fenty (D) gets to inaugurate what team executives say will be a new Nationals tradition of the mayor announcing "Play Ball!" at the season's opening game. This year that will be Sunday, in a nationally televised game on ESPN, against the Atlanta Braves at 8 p.m.
That announcement will come after the first pitch. President Bush will have those honors.
It's all part of the festivities on Sunday when the ballpark will open at 3:30 p.m. Fans can watch batting practice, beginning at 4:30 p.m. There will be a Dixieland band, a barbershop quartet, mambo music and a fighter jet flyover.
The last we heard, the man responsible for the team coming to D.C. and the new ballpark--former Mayor Anthony Williams (D)--will also be at the home opener. He'll be sitting in seats he purchased for himself, along third baseline.
Posted by: flatfoot_roy | March 26, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse
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