Stan Kasten Isn't Sorry For What He Did
Nats Prez Stan Kasten was just on ESPN 980's Sports Reporters to discuss, among other things, his gushy invitation to the fine people of Philadelphia this week. (An invitation which one Philly writer described as "bizarre and damn near traitorous.") Andy Pollin and Steve Czaban wanted him to admit he had made a mistake. Nothing doing.
"Well first of all, let me say that any passion that has been brought into this conversation is fabulous," Kasten said, approximately. "I love it, this is great. They're our best NL rivals, and the more passion we can have in this rivalry is fantastic."
He said he has invited countless groups all over the country to come visit the Nats in D.C. He said he has helped countless Nats fans get tickets to games in other cities. He said he can't stop inviting people to come visit, so proud is he of this ballpark.
"I welcome any fans from any other city, and I hope they feel free to come whenever they want," he said, which still feels different than going onto two Philly radio stations to beg rival fans to come to the first home series of the year.
Czaban said as much, calling his comments "a foul ball."
"If you're telling me there's something about the city of Philadelphia....Ok, I will listen to you on that subject, but I don't agree with you," Kasten said.
"Scum of the earth," Czaban suggested.
"That's horrible," Kasten said. "What an awful thing to say. Let me say this, no matter who comes to our games, we expect great enthusiasm and [good behavior]....To just shamelessly give in to your unfair stereotype? Shame on you. I know you don't feel that way."
Well, shame on a lot of other people, then, too. Like, most of the people who are reading these words, for example. The Prez was asked whether this out-of-town pitch was really necessary to sell out Monday's opener; "Oh, we're gonna sell out on Monday. I don't have any question about that," Kasten said. "This is more a general thing....It's what I do every day, guys. I want people from everywhere to come to Nationals Park, that's how proud I am of it."
"Stan, you should be able to draw fans within this seven-million person DMA with a team that people want to see," Czaban said.
"No question about it and that's not this point," Kasten said. "My point is that everyone from everywhere is always encouraged."
We'll see what things are like next week, but there's a difference between being welcomed and being encouraged, a difference between telling tour groups in Iowa that Nats Park is a fun destination during a Washington trip and telling Philly sports-talk audiences that they'll be able to buy Phillies hats in D.C.
I assumed when I heard the original interview that Kasten just didn't understand how that would come off to longtime D.C. sports fans, and that once schooled on the matter he would sort of finesse his way out of the situation. To the contrary, he still thinks it was a wise plan to spread his D.C. pride among the people of the Mid-Atlantic seaboard, in the form of enthusiastic invitations.
"Guys, I hope this is the biggest controversy I'm ever involved in for the rest of my career," he said to close the debate, which is also a fair point.
Posted by: EdTheRed | April 10, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JDP_ | April 10, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: caphcky | April 10, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 10, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: AnonymousSources | April 10, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Section505203 | April 10, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: nunof1 | April 10, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: RedBirdie | April 10, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JDB1 | April 11, 2009 1:39 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: PowerBoater69 | April 11, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: TheVampireCorndog | April 11, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: ThisGuy | April 11, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: CoverageisLacking | April 11, 2009 12:18 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Barno1 | April 11, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 11, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: PowerBoater69 | April 11, 2009 10:53 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Meridian1 | April 12, 2009 8:29 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 12, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Kev29 | April 13, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: poguesmahone | April 13, 2009 10:27 AM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.