July 23, 2006
It was only the second time this year the Nats had swept a series, and it was an appropriate way to mark the beginning of the Lerner Era, as D.C. fans "painted the town red" at the "Grand Reopening" of RFK Stadium. The lack of good pitchers on the Cubs' active roster showed, as Washington scored seven runs in each of the three games. On Friday evening, the Cubs rallied with three runs in the top of the seventh to take the lead, but then the Nats did likewise in the bottom of the eighth, and went on to win by one run. In the Saturday game, Alfonso Soriano really put on a show for other teams who might be interested in him, hitting three doubles and a triple. Livan Hernandez pitched a solid [six] innings, giving up only three runs. He says he really wants to stay in Washington, and I think he means it. In this afternoon's game, the Cubs never got going, and only scored one run. Unfortunately for the Nationals, the rest of the NL East has been doing better lately, even Atlanta, so they are still stuck in last place.
I was extremely pleased to learn that several of the new food vending kiosks at RFK Stadium have been positioned on the mezzanine-level balcony above the west entrance to the stadium. It is a very pleasant, underutilized spot with a nice view, and I'm surprised no one had thought of that before.
Our Nation's Capital has been hit by a crime wave in recent weeks, prompting calls for a curfew, over the objections of civil rights advocates. But now the criminals have gone too far, actually stealing the brand new bleachers at Ballou High School's Fort Grebel Field. This was one of the public sporting improvements to which Major League Baseball agreed last year as a condition for getting D.C. government funding for the Washington Nationals' future stadium. The price of aluminum has risen sharply in the past year, and the value of the stolen bleacher benches was about $14,000, or a little less than $1000 if sold as scrap. How utterly disgusting. See Washington Post.