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Yes, it's true -- and the $$$$$$$ club

So apparently Jim Clarke is, indeed, out as the public address announcer at RFK. According to people who would know, there was a tryout, in which Clarke was included, and there was one candidate who stood out above the rest, and it was not the incumbent PA announcer, and a change has been made.

Again, as I said earlier, this is an indication that every single thing -- including things much smaller than this -- will be scrutinized. Very interested in fan reaction to this move, assuming people care (and I know there are some who do).

Also: The lunch spread during spring training has been a bit paltry, cold cuts and a giant box of hard-boiled eggs on most days. But the other day came a huge buffet from Boston Market, chicken and turkey and potatoes and fixin's, etc. Courtesy of Ray King, as it turns out. Today, a Latin-influenced meal of ground beef, shredded chicken and pork with grilled bananas or plantains, etc. Courtesy of Cristian Guzman, as it turns out. Tomorrow? BBQ, courtesy of Brian Schneider, as it turns out.

The deal? "It's the millionaire's club," said Javy Castro, one of the assistant clubhouse managers. Basically, anybody making a million bucks (and these days, who among us isn't, really) buys the spread one day before games. On this team, that's not many dudes. But Chad Cordero is the newest member. "We've got people ahead of him," Castro said.

Nationals President Stan Kasten spoke to the team before the workout, and he said -- as did the players -- that he delivered much the same message as he's delivered to the public, which is that he considers this to be a very exciting time for the Nationals, that there are lots of opportunities, etc. He and GM Jim Bowden then watched parts of the workout, with media following them around like lemmings. (And yes, when needed, I can be a pretty good lemming.) Make sure you watch Jon Forsythe's video of Kasten addressing the cameras if you're interested in hearing Stan's Plan straight from the Man.

Wally's checking on the jersey sizes and stuff like that. May not get to it till tomorrow. "We've got some big boys," he said, maybe 10 or 12 at size 56. Woah.

Back after lunch -- and some actual work.

By Barry Svrluga  |  February 22, 2007; 1:37 PM ET
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Next: Spotlight: Matt Chico


Hey, great to hear. Do you know if they got the announcer that does everything in this area. His name is Jarrod and he's all over the place. He announced my son's Little League tournament in June, then we heard him at Centreville High School for college lacrosse, then we saw the GW women play basketball and he was there, and he said something about announcing before Caps games and at the new arena they have in Arlington. Jarrod is awesome and I hope they got him. Every time he sees us, he says hi and talks to us. I hope we run into him to congratulate him if it is him.

Posted by: Jeff Anderson | February 23, 2007 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Ray King was probably angry you all were eating his lunch.

Posted by: Diaw | February 23, 2007 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the heads up, I found your column very interesting reading. First I'd heard of it. Let me clear up a few things. First of all, I had already struck a deal for the 2007 season with the Potomac Nationals. That announcement should be coming out next week. The Nationals kept me in limbo all off season so I decided to move on. Secondly, I was never a part of the try-outs they conducted. The reason I decided to work for the P-Nats was because of the terrible treatment I've received on behalf of Tom Ward and Josh Golden. I just couldn't fathom working for them again. They are not nice people. I do have the satisfacton of knowing that I did the best job I could do for the Nationals. Did I make mistakes, you betcha. I did however learn from my mistakes, corrected them and moved on. I prepared intently before each game. You also mentioned in you column in the Post today that I missed player changes and pinch hitters during the 2005 season. That is correct, but there was a reason for that. I had so much material to read between inning's that I couldn't look at the field or listen to the press box announcements. By the time I was finished,
I had to announce the next batter according to MLB rules. We corrected the problem by bringing in a spotter and it never was an issue again. Also I had a director who would tell me what to say and when to say it. I hope this clears thing up. I'll miss announcing at RFK and all the great people that work there. Josh Golden and Tom Ward not included. I look forward to my time with the P-Nats this Summer. Everyone with the P-Nats are so great. They have always made me feel welcome and appreciate the work I do. If you'd like to know more, contact Josh Roony, who was my director the last two seasons with the Nationals. He'll tell you the work I put into that job and the frustrations I put up with at the hands of Josh Golden. Call me I'll be glad to give you his contact information. Thanks for this chance to explain myself.

Jim Clarke
PA Announce for the Potomac Natiionals

Posted by: Jim Clarke | February 23, 2007 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Interesting comment's from Jeff Anderson.
I think it was Jarrod who wrote the first comment and not Jeff. It's not nice or professional to kick someone when there down. There are three reasons Jarrod will never work for the Nationals. He was fired from the Potomac Nationals for threatening
the official Scorer. He was fired from GMU for urinating under the grandstands during a baseball game. If that's not enough, when given tickets to a GMU basketball game by the Potomac Nationals last year,he made-out with his 500 lbs girlfriend in the front row the whole game. So bad that the people at GMU called and complained.
So Jeff I think you're out of luck when it comes to Jarrod being the PA announcer. Bad news!

Posted by: Scott Strane | February 24, 2007 9:47 AM | Report abuse

In response to Scott's comments, I find them interesting that he brings up something that is over 10 years old and has his facts all wrong.

First, Mr. Anderson's son played in a tournament that I announced in Woodbridge, then I did see them after the UVa/Georgetown lacrosse game at Centreville. I hadn't realized he'd been to a GW game, but that's great. It's good to see that people are going to see the Colonial women play, they are a great team.

Second, I never threatened the official scorer with the Potomac Nationals, but it's good to know that's what they or the official scorer are saying. If you want the facts, he'd threatened me on more than one occasion over three years including using profanity directed at me.

Third, while yes I did have to use the restroom at GMU, it was not during a game but more than one hour prior to and there wasn't anyone around except the players. My option was to walk up to the field house or find another place closer by. After seeing a Mason player venture under the stands and make it loud enough by using one of the poles, I decided it'd be better to go there than risk having it happen on myself. That happened in 1996. Besides, who hasn't been in an urgent situation where desperate times call for desperate measures. GMU never asked me why I did it nor gave me a chance to explain.

Fourth, my girlfriend is not 500lbs, not close to it. Get your facts straight. And yes I did kiss her. What's wrong with that. We were in Romano's Macaroni Grill last night and people kissed in full view of the rest of the mall. I love my girlfriend, people who love each other kiss. You failed to mention that the woman who complained also hit me and my girlfriend during the game on several occasions or that the guy that was behind us said, "It's great to see two people in love".

Fifth, and most importantly, I do not agree with the way Jim was let go from the team. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays let their PA guy go before Christmas with a cold phone call. At least he got the pleasure of a phone call instead of reading about it in a blog on The Washington Post's web site. I missed the first season in DC, but the two games I did attend (while working for the P-Nats), he sounded good and didn't seem to miss anything. I will say though, that when you have a lot to read between innings it can be tough to get the subs in. Announcing is something anybody can do. But there are only a few who can do it well and Jim did it well. Unfortunately my early views of him were skewed slightly by people trying to build me up to go after his position with the Nationals. I have disassociated myself with those people.

Scott, it's great to know you don't let anything go and don't know how to put things in the past. I have. I don't harp on what happened at Mason anymore nor do I harp on what happened with the P-Nats, only if someone brings them up. I've moved on, love what I am doing, love the business that I'm running, and love the relationships I have made while announcing. All the great people I've met that I wouldn't have otherwise has only helped me become a better announcer. Focusing on the negative, not so much. I'll leave you with what I leave everyone with. "Sounds good, have fun!"

Posted by: Jarrod Wronski | February 26, 2007 9:42 AM | Report abuse

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