Opening Day at the Nationals New Stadium

Tonight the Washington Nationals christened their brand new ballpark. Having lived in DC the past two years, witnessing the past two opening days in person, and watching 20-plus games at old RFK, this game certainly piqued my interest. It also didn’t hurt that the Nationals opened up against my beloved Atlanta Braves.

Based on all I could see radiating from my TV set, the new stadium is an amazing upgrade from the personality-lacking RFK. Food venues looked decent, the field didn’t show the evidence of splitting duties with a soccer team, and on the whole the stadium looked like a great place to enjoy a night or afternoon of baseball (perhaps this was aided by a 40,000+ crowd on hand). I can’t wait to catch a game there the next time I’m in the area.

I’ve yet to see a quality photo of the finished stadium as yet, but this might give you a good idea:

Picture source: The Ballparks of Baseball website
http://www.ballparksofbaseball.com/future/wash751.jpg

Now that looks like a real ballpark. Eerily similar to the Braves’ own Turner Field… Apparently the Nats’ new home offers views of the Capitol and National Monument as well.

Sadly, the Braves lost 3-2… I didn’t have the chance to see much of the game, but I did see the Braves come from behind in the top of the 9th to tie it up 2-2 on a passed ball, but this excitement was brief. In the bottom of the inning Ryan Zimmerman hit a walk-off homer to make the inaugural day memorable for Nats fans. At least Zimmerman is a UVA baseball alum, so that lessens the pain.

Overall it’s been an abysmal day for teams I like… Texas lost by almost 20, and won’t be joining the Final 4. Also, Davidson lost by 2 to Kansas, ending the awe of the nation. We will now be “treated” to a Final Four with four #1s, which has never before happened. I don’t know what angers me more, how dull and uninteresting that makes next weekend or that millions of basketball idiots across the country who make picks solely on the basis of seed are slaughtering me.

For the record, I picked two of them, UNC and UCLA. My final is UNC over UCLA.

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