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More from Nationals Park

I'm waiting for a couple of calls back from some people, so I thought I'd round out some stuff from the tour of the ballpark this morning.

First of all, with the help of the Journal staff and the folks over at washingtonpost.com, here's some video of today's event:



Secondly, anyone who isn't familiar with this Web site, run by the Post's own Jacqueline Dupree, should take a cruise through there pronto. I've linked above to the photos from today's tour, but the jdland.com homepage is an essential resource to anyone who's interested in living/working/watching baseball in the area referred to here as "Near Southeast." Those photos will help you get a grip on what we saw today.

Also, hopefully you saw this story from Saturday's $.35 edition, which has lots of info on the sod.

So today's event -- after two or three protesters yelling "Public Property's Not for Sale!" over and over again were removed -- was pretty non-eventful from a city/team side. Both the DCSEC's Greg O'Dell and Stan Kasten said the two sides were working on plans for parking shuttles from RFK Stadium.

"We're in the same place we were a couple weeks ago," Kasten said. "We now feel confident we're going to have available for purchase a spot for all season-ticket holders," and that, I believe, will include 41-game and 20-game plan holders.

He added later: "I don't have any plans at the moment for daily cash lots." He again said that he believes Metro will be the best way for almost everyone to get to the ballpark. That has been a consistent approach from the day the plans for this place were set in stone.

The relocation process: This is obviously something the club is trying to take great care with, and it seems like they're ready to deal with some upset customers, because that's the nature of this beast. As Kasten said, "The geometry here is different in 100 ways." RFK, a multipurpose stadium, was simply configuered differently.

As it affects the relocation process, this mostly has to do with the seats behind home plate. Because those are the $300 seats now -- and because there were no such "premium" seats before -- people who were spending good money at RFK to sit behind the plate but who now don't want to spend THAT much will be displaced. The trickle-down effect from this is obvious, with people from the base lines being moved further out and up and so on.

This all seems logical, but that doesn't mean that there won't be some folks who bought tickets in 2005 that won't be completely satisfied. It's the nature of the business.

The March 29 game against the Orioles: It will be free to season-ticket holders,which is a change from previous years. But there will be no tickets available for the game. Kasten described it as a "dress rehearsal," and said, "We don't need to have the park full." The idea, it seems, is to get a healthy crowd in there to test such things as flushing all the toilets, etc., and give the staff a dry run. The club will work with the city to see if it can donate banks of free tickets to kids, etc., and they'll round out the crowd that way.

March 30 opener: ESPN and MLB have much to say about this, and it has to do with teams starting their seasons overseas (Oakland and Boston, perhaps) and what sort of fall-out there is from all this. I've got calls into both entities and will let you know what I hear, but Kasten said the club is "hopeful" they'll get that March 30 date to open on Sunday night on ESPN.

Asked when he expected to hear about it, he said he had been told "soon" for about a month now. So we'll see.

The rest of the schedule: A temporary version (already posted here) will go out with hte relocation packets, which Kasten said he was reluctant to do because things can change depending on that opener.

Rest of tour: Went to the clubhouse and the pressbox, etc. Home clubhouse looks like it'll really be great. Very nice wide lockers, lots of space, etc. Pressbox is high, which is fine because it gives more paying customers better views.

That's all for now.

By Barry Svrluga  |  November 13, 2007; 3:11 PM ET
 
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Comments

Glad to hear you and Stan are speaking again, Barry.

Posted by: Hendo | November 13, 2007 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Bummer about there not being any single tix sales for the exhibition game, IMO (yes, I know that they don't count, but I happen to like going to them).

Thanks for the link to the Dupree site, Barry. I liked the photo of the enthralled members of the press. Where was Boz' helmet??

Posted by: natsfan1a | November 13, 2007 5:06 PM | Report abuse

So once again Barry leaves off posting for several days (for good reason) and then lights us up with several in a row.

Guys, Barry is a streak-poster.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | November 13, 2007 5:07 PM | Report abuse

If I were more cynical, I would say that no tickets are available for the O's exhibition because Nats management wants to make its assessment of the new park based on the average attendance at the old park. Could that be possible? Nah.

Posted by: leetee1955 | November 13, 2007 5:13 PM | Report abuse

"Guys, Barry is a streak-poster."

But he comes in strong after a several-days' layoff. If Fick could have done that he might still have a job. (I'm located just far enough from 15th and L, and Capitol Hill, to be able to draw this inappropriate analogy with complete safety to my person.)

Posted by: Hendo | November 13, 2007 5:17 PM | Report abuse

hee hee, leetee!

---

If I were more cynical, I would say that no tickets are available for the O's exhibition because Nats management wants to make its assessment of the new park based on the average attendance at the old park. Could that be possible? Nah.

Posted by: natsfan1a | November 13, 2007 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Stan: Yes, the media are in the park, I did put them in here, despite my best efforts.
Barry, to himself: Yeah, Chuckles? Sure, you may be President of a professional baseball club, and blah blah blah, but more people still like me than like you, you sanctimoniuos little. . .
Bill Ladson: Peanut?

Posted by: Atlanta | November 13, 2007 6:07 PM | Report abuse

So, I wonder how many MOY votes Manny will have when the results come out tomorrow. He's got mine, anyway.

Posted by: natsfan1a | November 13, 2007 7:24 PM | Report abuse

JD is going to be ticked that you misspelled her name Barry.

Posted by: gonats | November 13, 2007 7:24 PM | Report abuse

"The March 29 game against the Orioles: It will be free to season-ticket holders,which is a change from previous years."
------------------

I suppose the relocation packet that's scheduled to get to me by next week will tell me, but is this for full-season plan holders only, or will it include partial plan holders?

Posted by: Juan-John | November 13, 2007 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Gonats: Looks like Barry fixed it. And as long as it wasn't "Jackie", I can live with it. And after all, who among us REALLY can spell Barry's last name right without cheating, anyway?

Posted by: JD | November 13, 2007 8:36 PM | Report abuse

NATS Nation needs to get working on a petition to get ESPN and MLB to televise our home opener on March 30th. It would be un-American bordering on unpatriotic for MLB and ESPN to choose televising a game overseas versus the Nationals capital. Who knows who to contact at MLB and ESPN?

Posted by: Nats Fan | November 13, 2007 9:21 PM | Report abuse

JD-

Yep, he fixed it. And c'mon, anyone can nail Svrluga after reading his stuff for three straight years.

Now don't ask me to pronounce it.

Posted by: gonats | November 13, 2007 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Can someone find out how we can contact MLB and ESPN as the previous post said.

Posted by: MM | November 13, 2007 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Here is a link to MLB so if we all can send them email or call MLB and hope we can get the opening day game.

https://secure.mlb.com/mlb/help/contact_us.jsp

Posted by: MM | November 13, 2007 9:55 PM | Report abuse

Okay here is the contact link for ESPN.

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/news/story?page=contact/espntv

Posted by: MM | November 13, 2007 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for posting the links!!

Posted by: Nats Fan | November 13, 2007 10:06 PM | Report abuse

The Red Sox / A's games will be several days before 3/30 - 31 weekend (3/24 & 25 or 25 & 26, I forget), so there is no conflict with showing the Nats.

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