Orioles fans defect to Nats?
Today's Washington Post profiled a number of former Orioles fans from the Maryland suburbs who have gotten caught up in "Nats Fever." It's too bad in a way, since the O's are playing so darned well this year, for once. I suppose if I were an Orioles fan, though, I too would be awfully ashamed by how their owner has been acting toward Washington. I'm a little skeptical about such cases representing a broad trend, however: That Post article sounds like media hype to me.
New stadium woes
D.C. official Natwar* Gandhi has again advised against a private stadium financing plan proposed by local investors, on the grounds that it relied on a dubious tax loophole that could be closed by Congress at any time. That leaves the Deutsche Bank proposal, which is not likely to be approved by the D.C. council either. See Washington Post. *Just wondering: Do you suppose anyone has given him the nickname "Make Love"? Gay activists in the D.C. area are lamenting the imminent demise of The Follies and other gay establishments on O St. SE, where the new stadium will be built. See Washington Post, but only if you have a strong stomach. The article does not shed positive light on that lifestyle.
Nats make it 8 straight
They had to come from behind with a late-inning rally (Brian Schneider hit the key 2-run single), but the Washington Nationals once again prevailed tonight, beating Seattle 9-3. The Phillies won too, so the Nats remain 1 1/2 games ahead in the NL East, "where all the teams are above average" (above .500, that is).
Ohka traded for Spivey
Not surprisingly, Nats pitcher Tomo Ohka was traded to Milwaukee for second baseman Junior Spivey yesterday. Jamey Carroll had been filling for Jose Vidro in as starting second baseman, and has done very well, but he will now return to a reserve role. Vidro did a bit of practice at RFK Stadium yesterday, but is not expected back on the team until after the All Star break. Ohka began as a starter, then got demoted to the bullpen. He had a few solid outings, but was just not reliable enough. Last week he turned his back on manager Frank Robinson, an unforgiveable show of disrespect. It's also out of character for someone with an East Asian cultural background; Confucian ethics place high emphasis on respecting authority figures.
A-Rod reaches #400
Even though the Yankees as a whole are, shall we say, underachieving this season, some of their stars still shine. Congratulations to Alex Rodriguez for becoming the youngest player ever to reach 400 career home runs in Milwaukee yesterday. He's not even 30; what if he lasts another ten or twelve years???