Nationals Park

Nationals Park is a baseball park along the Anacostia River in the Navy Yard neighborhood of Washington, D.C. It is the home ballpark for the Washington Nationals, the city's Major League Baseball franchise. When the Montreal Expos franchise relocated to Washington, D.C. and became the Nationals, they temporarily played at RFK Stadium until Nationals Park was completed. It is the first LEED-certified green major professional sports stadium in the United States.[10]

The ballpark, designed by HOK Sport and Devrouax & Purnell Architects and Planners,[11] cost $693 million[3] to build, with an additional $84.2 million spent on transportation, art, and infrastructure upgrades to support the stadium for a total cost of $783.9 million.[12] The stadium has a capacity of 41,339.[13][14][15][16] The Washington Monument and the Capitol building are visible from the upper decks on the first base side of the field.

Nationals Park 2011 2 - Stierch
Nationals Park on July 5, 2011.

The park's name echoes that of the early-1900s ballpark used by the Washington Senators, National Park, until it was rebuilt and renamed Griffith Stadium.

Nationals Panorama vs. Cubs
Nationals Park on May 10, 2013.

Nationals Park hosted the 2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, the first All-Star Game to be played in Washington, D.C. since 1969.[17]

Nationals Park
The Sea of Red
Nationals Park
Opening of Nationals Park - 039 (2377924697)
Nationals Park, March 30, 2008
Nationals Park is located in Washington, D.C.
Nationals Park
Nationals Park
Location in Washington, D.C.
Nationals Park is located in the United States
Nationals Park
Nationals Park
Location in the United States
Address1500 South Capitol Street SE
LocationWashington, D.C.
Coordinates38°52′22″N 77°0′27″W / 38.87278°N 77.00750°WCoordinates: 38°52′22″N 77°0′27″W / 38.87278°N 77.00750°W
Public transitWMATA Metro Logo.svg Washington Metro
WMATA Green.svg at Navy Yard–Ballpark
Parking14 sanctioned parking lots or garages
OwnerEvents DC
OperatorWashington Nationals Baseball Club LLC.
Capacity41,339[1]
Record attendance45,966, October 12, 2012 vs (Cardinals)
Field size
Left Field - 337 feet (103 m)
Left-Center - 377 feet (115 m)
Center Field - 402 feet (123 m)
Right-Center - 370 feet (113 m)
Right Field - 335 feet (102 m)[2]
NationalsParkDimensions
SurfaceKentucky Bluegrass
Construction
Broke groundMay 4, 2006
OpenedMarch 22, 2008 (college game)[8]
March 29, 2008 (exhibition game)
March 30, 2008 (Opening Day)[9]
Construction cost$693 million[3]
($806 million in 2018 dollars[4])
ArchitectHOK Sport (now Populous)
Devrouax & Purnell Architects - Planners
Project managerTurner/Brailsford & Dunlavey/McKissack & McKissack[5]
Structural engineerReStl/Thornton Tomasetti[6]
Services engineerM-E Engineers/JVP Engineers/SIM-G Technologies[7]
General contractorClark/Hunt/Smoot Joint Venture[6]
Tenants
Washington Nationals (MLB) (2008–present)

Location and transportation

Nationals Park is located in the Southeast quadrant of Washington, D.C. on South Capitol Street (a main artery separating Southeast from Southwest Washington) at the Anacostia River waterfront. The ballpark is accessible from I-395 via the Southwest Freeway, and from I-295 via the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge, which carries South Capitol Street across the Anacostia River. The Douglass Bridge was renovated so that South Capitol Street could continue at ground level past the stadium (it was previously 15 feet (4.6 m) above ground level).

The main method of transportation to the stadium is on the Washington Metro system. The stadium is one block from the Navy Yard – Ballpark station on the Green Line. The station is located near the park's center field entrance (on the opposite side of Capitol Street SE from the main entrance) and is heavily used by fans on game day. Prior to the ballpark's opening, the station's ballpark entrance underwent a major expansion, with the relocation of the farecard mezzanine to street level, along with the addition of an extra escalator and elevator to handle the crowds.

Parking near the stadium is limited. There are a total of 14 Nationals Park-sanctioned parking lots or garages, with a small number of third-party lots also in the vicinity of the stadium. During the 2008 and 2009 seasons, the Nationals ran a free shuttle service (dubbed the "Nats Express") from parking lots at RFK Stadium to Nationals Park on game days. However, the team canceled the service after the 2009 season.

Several Metrobus routes and the DC Circulator's Eastern Market–L'Enfant Plaza route serve the park. Various other transit options include a water taxi service from Alexandria, Virginia and Georgetown.

Cyclists are encouraged to ride to the stadium and are offered free valet bicycle parking. Garage C, located next to the ticket windows at the corner of 1st and N Street, houses a free bike valet service where fans are invited to store their bikes for the duration of the game. There are also 110 red bike racks on the sidewalks that create the perimeter of the ballpark.

History

Site selection and design

After it was announced that the Expos would leave Montreal, Washington, DC began looking for a site for a baseball stadium to lure the team to Washington. After considering sites near RFK Stadium, in NoMA and straddling I-395 at Banneker Park the District announced on September 21, 2004 that they had chosen a site near the SE Anacostia waterfront.[18]

Construction

Nationalspark-sept2007
Nationals Park, under construction in September 2007, with the U.S. Capitol seen in the background

Financing for the stadium was expected to be provided by a banking syndicate led by Deutsche Bank. However, finalization of the financing deal stalled due to complex negotiations among the city government, MLB as owner of the team, and the bank. The bank requested a letter of credit or comparable financial guarantee against stadium rent to cover risks such as poor attendance or terrorism. The requested guarantee was $24 million, with the city requesting that MLB provide the guarantee. The financing situation was since solved and construction began in May 2006.

The site of Nationals Park was chosen by Mayor Anthony Williams as the most viable of four possibilities for a ballpark. The ballpark's design was released to the public at a press conference on March 14, 2006. Ground breaking was in early 2006. With an ambitious construction schedule of fewer than two years to complete the stadium, a design-build approach was selected to allow the architects and builders to work in concert with one another. Ronnie Strompf, the project superintendent, coordinated the efforts of numerous subcontractors on a daily basis.[19]

Opening

The 2008 Washington Nationals season was the team's first in Nationals Park. The George Washington University (GW) and the Nationals announced in February 2008 that the GW Colonials baseball team would play the first game in Nationals Park on March 22, 2008. GW played Saint Joseph's University in an afternoon game[8] and the hometown Colonials had a 9–4 victory over Saint Joseph's.[20]

The Washington Nationals defeated the Baltimore Orioles, 3–0, in an exhibition game on March 29, 2008, in their first game in the ballpark.[21]

The Nationals opened the 2008 MLB season in Nationals Park with a rare one-game series against the Atlanta Braves on March 30, which served as the first official MLB game at the park. True to tradition, President George W. Bush threw out the ceremonial first pitch. The Nationals defeated the Braves 3–2 with a walk-off home run from Ryan Zimmerman,[22] giving the Nationals their first opening day win since moving to Washington. Chipper Jones of the Braves hit the first batted ball and first home run, while the Nationals' Cristian Guzman got the first base hit. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Zimmerman's game-winning home run was the third walk-off home run in major-league history to be hit in the first MLB game played at a stadium.[23] The game was the most-watched MLB opening night in the history of ESPN.[24]

In their first season at Nationals Park, the Nationals finished with a league-worst record of 59-102.[25] At home, they drew 29,005 fans per game, placing their average attendance at 19th in MLB.[26]

Opening Night, March 30, 2008
Opening Night, March 30, 2008

Seasons and changes

2009 season

Several ballpark improvement projects were completed by the Nationals during the off-season, including:

  • Expansion of the Red Porch restaurant in center field to include additional tables on both the concourse and field side. Glass windows on the concourse side were replaced with slidable garage doors, opening to a fenced outdoor patio. On the field side, the rear-most row of Center Field Lounge seats were removed, with an outdoor deck featuring tables and chairs installed in its place. New signage was added on the concourse side.
  • Installation of three statues in the ballpark honoring Walter Johnson of the original Washington Senators, Frank Howard of the expansion Senators, and Josh Gibson of the Negro League Homestead Grays, which played many of its games in Washington.[27]
  • A large Washington Nationals hat was added above the entrance to the team store near the center field plaza.
  • New LED message boards were added over the roof of the Center Field gate, providing information and instructions to fans entering the ballpark.
  • New advertisement panels were attached to the face of the two garages in center field, with green panels being replaced by white panels. Additional panels showing the team's 2009 promotions and the current lineup were added to the western garage, facing the plaza.

Concessionaire Levy Restaurants replaced Centerplate as the provider of food and beverage at Nationals Park beginning with the 2009 season.

Before the Nationals 2009 home opener on April 13, 2009 at 3 PM, longtime Philadelphia Phillies announcer Harry Kalas was found unconscious in the Nationals Park press box at 12:20 PM. Kalas was rushed to George Washington University Hospital and pronounced dead at 1:20 PM.[28][29] A moment of silence was held before the game, followed by both Nationals and Phillies fans applauding Kalas in tribute. The Phillies played with a picture of Kalas in their dugout.

On June 4, 2009, Randy Johnson became the 24th pitcher in MLB history to reach 300 wins when the San Francisco Giants beat the Nationals 5–1 at Nationals Park.[30] The game was scheduled to be played the night before, but was delayed due to heavy rain in the DC-area. On July 4, 2009, Adam Dunn became the 123rd player to hit 300 career home runs. The home run came in the 7th inning in a 5-3 win versus the Atlanta Braves.[31]

2010 season

During the All-Star break, the press box was repainted blue to match the color of the seats. On June 8, 2010, pitcher Stephen Strasburg, called the "most hyped and closely watched pitching prospect in the history of baseball",[32] made his first major league appearance, starting a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates before a sold-out crowd at Nationals Park. Strasburg pitched 7 innings, giving up two runs and striking out 14 batters, a new team strikeout record.

2011 season

Minor changes prior to the start of the 2011 season include the removal of the party tent on top of the LF parking garage to improve views of the U.S. Capitol from upper sections, chrome baseball decorations adorning the outside the stadium, and various signage and concession changes including the departure of Five Guys. Nationals Park also became home of the D.C. Sports Hall of Fame.[33] In June 2011 four new concession stands opened, owned by Danny Meyer's Union Square Hospitality Group: Blue Smoke (barbecue), Box Frites ("Belgian-style fries and dipping sauces"), El Verano Taqueria (Mexican) and Shake Shack (hamburgers, hot dogs, frozen custard).[34] The team has also ended Friday night firework shows and fireworks after home runs and team victories.

2012 season

On May 4 for the series against Philadelphia, the Nationals renamed the park "Natitude Park". This was following their "Take Back the Park" plan, first selling advance tickets to fans in the Washington D.C. area before opening up ticket sales to other states.[35] This marked a shift from recent years where Phillies fans had flooded the park, as the crowd was predominantly Nationals fans and the team took two of three from their division rivals.[36] The Nationals made the playoffs for the first time since relocating to Washington in the 2012 season, with Games 3, 4, and 5 of the 2012 National League Division Series against the St. Louis Cardinals being played in Nationals Park. Washington lost the NLDS three games to two.

2013 season

Team owner Theodore N. Lerner approached D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and other city officials in mid-July 2013 and asked if the city would pay to have a retractable roof built over Nationals Park. After seeing sketches, Gray rejected the proposal at the same meeting. No cost analyses were done prior to the meeting, although team architects speculated it would cost $300 million. City officials noted that the stadium was not designed for a roof.[37]

2014 season

The Nationals made the playoffs for the second time since arriving in Washington, and Nationals Park hosted Games 1 and 2 of the 2014 National League Division Series. The Nationals lost the series to the San Francisco Giants three games to one.

2015 NHL Winter Classic

On January 1, 2015, Nationals Park hosted the 2015 NHL Winter Classic before a crowd of 42,832 spectators. The Washington Capitals defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 after former Blackhawk Troy Brouwer scored the go-ahead goal with 13 seconds remaining in regulation play. This made the Capitals only the second home team to win a Winter Classic, and the first to win two Winter Classics, having won in Pittsburgh in 2011.

2015 season

On July 17, 2015, during a regular-season game between the Nationals and the Los Angeles Dodgers, a series of three power outages affected a bank of lights along the park's third base line. The first power outage, which occurred in the bottom of the 4th inning, resulted in a delay of 1 hour and 22 minutes. Play was later resumed as the pitchers retired the next 5 batters. In the middle of the 5th inning, another power outage occurred, which resulted in a 40-minute delay. The bottom of the 5th inning was later played; at the end of the inning, a third power outage occurred. Due to the power outages, the game was suspended in the top of the 6th inning, with the Nationals leading the Dodgers 3-2 at that point. The game was resumed the next afternoon, with the Nationals winning against the Dodgers, 5-3.

2016 season

The Nationals made the playoffs for the third time since arriving in Washington, and Nationals Park hosted Games 1, 2, and 5 of the 2016 National League Division Series. The Nationals lost the series to the Los Angeles Dodgers three games to two.

2017 season

Prior to the 2017 season, the Nationals added the MGM National Harbor Dugout Club, named for the nearby Maryland casino which opened in December 2016.[1] These seats were added near the first base dugout, in the approximate location where the tarp was stored in previous seasons. The tarp has been moved to the third-base side.

In late September 2017, a new organ was installed at Nationals Park, fulfilling the Washington Nationals organization's long-held goal of upgrading the stadium's organ. The Viscount Sonus 60, priced at $20,000 on European Web sites, was manufactured in Mondaino, Italy, and tuned in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. It was installed in a former radio booth on the second floor of the stadium's press box, replacing a less-capable portable Hammond organ that had been located in a corner of the stadium's sound effects control room. The new location gave the organist a private room for the first time, as well as a better view of the field and crowd.[38]

The Nationals made the playoffs for the fourth time since arriving in Washington, and Nationals Park hosted Games 1, 2, and 5 of the 2017 National League Division Series. The Nationals lost the series to the Chicago Cubs three games to two.

2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

Nationals Park hosted the 2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game on July 17. It was the fifth MLB All-Star Game to be played in Washington, D.C., and the first in Washington since 1969.[39] The American League defeated the National League 8-6 before 43,843 fans.

Washington Nationals average attendance

Average regular season attendance[40]
Season Average attendance
2008 29,005
2009 22,435
2010 22,569
2011 24,256
2012 29,269
2013 32,746
2014 31,844
2015 32,344
2016 30,641
2017 31,173
2018 31,775

Features

Nationals Park
The exterior of Nationals Park

As of the 2017 season, the ballpark has 41,339 seats and features 79 suites on three levels, all around the infield.[41] Team President Stan Kasten also said that the team might sell the naming rights to the levels of the luxury suites, which currently bear the names of presidents Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln. While the city agreed to spend up to $611 million, Kasten has stated that the principal owners, the Lerner family, spent tens of millions of dollars more on "jazzing up the park". The park has an out-of-town scoreboard, which is 102 feet (31 m) long, installed in the right field wall. The main scoreboard, at 101 feet (31 m) long and 47 feet (14 m) high, is more than five times the size of the one at RFK Stadium.[42]

Aerial view of Nationals Park
Aerial view of Nationals Park. The Nationals' previous stadium, RFK Stadium, is barely visible near the top of the picture.

On March 13, 2007, Kasten announced that there would be a grove of cherry blossoms located just beyond the left field bleachers. Kasten stated that the cherry blossoms will provide a look that Americans associate with the nation's capital.

Other distinctive features of the ballpark are the views of the U.S. Capitol from the upper deck. These views have been mostly blocked by new construction in recent years. Fans in the upper deck sitting down the right field line near the foul pole, during all day games, fans can get a glimpse of the Washington Monument and the National Cathedral. Several area-based food establishments have concession stands: Ben's Chili Bowl hot dogs, Dogfish Head and Flying Dog Brewery beer.

Another feature, The Budweiser Brew House, is a full service sit-down restaurant located in center field. It offers some amenities unusual in a ballpark such as salads, along with regular ballpark fare such as burgers and hot dogs. When the stadium first opened in 2008, the restaurant was enclosed by glass windows with a view of the field which were soon made retractable. The restaurant was eventually expanded to outside the interior, with tables being placed in three rows outside.

In 2010, the stadium added the Ring of Honor, celebrating players from the Washington Senators (Joe Cronin, Rick Ferrell, Goose Goslin, Clark Griffith, Bucky Harris, Walter Johnson, Harmon Killebrew, Heinie Manush, Sam Rice, and Early Wynn), Negro League Homestead Grays (Cool Papa Bell, Ray Brown, Josh Gibson, Buck Leonard, Cumberland Posey, and Jud Wilson), and the Nationals franchise's previous incarnation, the Montreal Expos (Gary Carter and Andre Dawson) who have been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Since 2011, a submarine dive horn has blared after every Nationals home run and win—a nod to the park's location in the Navy Yard neighborhood.

In September 2018 Nationals Park began using a bullpen cart.

In September 2018 the ashes of John McNamara, a sportswriter who was killed in the Capital Gazette shooting, were spread in the flowers just over the left field fence. [43]

In terms of batting park factor ESPN writer Tristan H. Cockcroft has said that "Nationals Park has been remarkably consistent in its neutrality from a run-scoring perspective." [44]

Panoramic image of Nationals Park during a home game against the San Francisco Giants, May 2, 2011.
Panoramic image of Nationals Park during a home game against the San Francisco Giants, May 2, 2011.

Seating

Screech standing
Screech, the Washington Nationals mascot before his 2009 "growth spurt".
NationalsParkCaptiol
Some fans in the upper level can see the Capitol.

Seating in Nationals Park is divided into over a dozen different pricing zones. There are four seating levels: the field level, mezzanine level, gallery level, and upper gallery level.

The Grandstand is composed of sections 401 and 402, in the corner of the upper deck in left field, in which seats are $5 for all games. Tickets go on sale 2½ hours before the first pitch on the day of the game and cannot be ordered in advance.

The stadium features three levels of upscale luxury seating. The largest of the three, the Norfolk Southern Club, is a two-story indoor lounge exclusively for fans with tickets in sections 206-221. The lounge is 33,000 square feet (3,100 m2) and features various food entities, live television broadcasts of the game on dozens of TVs, and views of the Anacostia River. It was previously named the Stars and Stripes Club until the naming rights were purchased by Norfolk Southern Railway in 2014.[45] The PNC Diamond Club, the naming rights of which were purchased by PNC Bank,[46] is on the field level between the two dugouts. It was remodeled and expanded into two floors prior to the 2016 season.[47] The Delta Sky360 Club seats are located right behind home plate and are the most expensive seats in the stadium and include access to an indoor lounge. It was previously named the Lexus Presidents Club until Delta Airlines purchased the naming rights in 2016.[47]

As features were changed, added, or removed, seating capacity has changed repeatedly since the stadium opened; the number of seats has dropped slightly several times since it opened in 2008. In the inaugural 2008 season, seating capacity was 41,888;[48] as of 2016, the seating capacity is 41,313.[49] The seating capacity increased to 41,339 in 2017.[1]

Nationals Park contains a split in the upper deck that is a homage to Griffith Stadium. [50]

Non-baseball events

Nationals Park has hosted a number of non-baseball events, such as concerts and business meetings.

Hockey

On January 1, 2015, the National Hockey League held its "Winter Classic" - the New Year's Day traditional outdoor game - at Nationals Park. A hockey rink was constructed on the field where the home team Washington Capitals hosted the Chicago Blackhawks. The Capitals scored the game-winning goal with 13 seconds left in the 3rd period, defeating the Blackhawks 3-2.

Concerts

Performers who have held concerts at Nationals Park include Billy Joel, Taylor Swift, and Paul McCartney, among others.

Date Artist Opening act(s) Tour / Concert name Attendance Revenue Notes
July 11, 2009 Billy Joel
Elton John
Face to Face 2009 38,617 / 38,617 $4,638,645
July 23, 2010 Dave Matthews Band Zac Brown Band 2010 Summer Tour 36,772 / 36,939 $2,701,617 [51]
September 14, 2012 Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band Wrecking Ball World Tour 36,525 / 36,525 $3,305,920 Ali Weinberg, the daughter of Max Weinberg performed accordion on "American Land", backing vocals on "Twist and Shout" and "Shout".
July 12, 2013 Paul McCartney Out There Tour 39,515 / 39,515 $4,452,036 [52]
July 25, 2014 Jason Aldean Florida Georgia Line
Tyler Farr
Burn It Down Tour 32,263 / 36,948 $2,188,891
July 26, 2014 Billy Joel Gavin DeGraw Billy Joel in Concert 38,487 / 38,487 $4,200,480
August 11, 2014 One Direction 5 Seconds of Summer Where We Are Tour 42,834 / 42,834 $4,233,063
July 13, 2015 Taylor Swift Vance Joy
Shawn Mendes
Haim
The 1989 World Tour 85,014 / 85,014 $9,730,596 Lorde was the special guest.[53][54]
July 14, 2015 Jason Derulo was the special guest.[55]
August 14, 2015 Zac Brown Band The Avett Brothers Jekyll and Hyde Tour
July 30, 2016 Billy Joel Charlie Puth Billy Joel in Concert 37,807 / 37,807 $4,031,634 [56]
September 1, 2016 Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band The River Tour 2016 36,463 / 36,463 $4,627,705

Papal Mass

On April 17, 2008, Pope Benedict XVI celebrated Mass at Nationals Park for 47,000 people during his visit to the United States. There were 200,000 requests submitted for tickets to the Mass.[57]

References

  1. ^ a b 2017 Washington Nationals Official Media Guide. Major League Baseball Advanced Media. March 19, 2017. p. 6.
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  3. ^ a b "Ballpark's Final Tag: $693 million". Washington Times. January 7, 2009. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  4. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  5. ^ "Nationals Park – MLB Washington Nationals". Brailsford & Dunlavey. Retrieved August 25, 2013.
  6. ^ a b Capital Improvements. Modern Steel Construction
  7. ^ Project Profile - Nationals Park
  8. ^ a b "George Washington University Baseball Team to Play First Game at Nationals Park" (Press release). Major League Baseball Advanced Media. February 29, 2008. Retrieved March 20, 2008.
  9. ^ Ladson, Bill (December 18, 2007). "All Eyes on Nationals to Open Season". MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved December 18, 2007.
  10. ^ Lambert, Lisa (March 28, 2008). "Washington DC Home to First "Green" Stadium in U.S." Reuters. Thomson Reuters. Retrieved September 27, 2013.
  11. ^ Seidel, Jeff (March 14, 2006). "New Ballpark Design Unveiled: Nationals Aiming to Begin Play in New Stadium in 2008". Major League Baseball Advanced Media. Retrieved March 14, 2006.
  12. ^ "Paying for the Ballpark". The Washington Post. March 24, 2008. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  13. ^ "Nationals Park Facts & Figures". Major League Baseball Advanced Media. Retrieved April 10, 2010.
  14. ^ "Washington Nationals". Forbes. March 1, 2012. Archived from the original on September 1, 2012. Retrieved April 3, 2012.
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  16. ^ Washington Nationals on the Forbes MLB Team Valuations List
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  18. ^ Kovaleski, Serge F.; Heath, Thomas (22 September 2004). "DC Offers Waterfront Baseball Stadium". Retrieved 3 June 2016.
  19. ^ "Major League Stadium". Build It Bigger. Season 1. Episode 14. October 17, 2007. Discovery Channel.
  20. ^ Phillips, Michael (March 22, 2008). "GW, St. Joseph's Honored to Open Field". Major League Baseball Advanced Media. Retrieved March 22, 2008.
  21. ^ Phillips, Michael (March 29, 2008). "Nationals Victorious in Stadium Debut". Major League Baseball Advanced Media. Retrieved March 29, 2008.
  22. ^ Associated Press (March 30, 2008). "Nats' Zimmerman Plays Hero With Game-Winning Shot in Opener". ESPN. Retrieved March 30, 2008.
  23. ^ More on Zim. The Washington Times. April 2, 2008.
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  25. ^ 2008 Washington Nationals Statistics and Roster
  26. ^ 2008 Major League Baseball Attendance
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  28. ^ Salisbury, Jim (April 13, 2009). "Phils Announcer Harry Kalas Dies". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved May 22, 2009.
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  33. ^ Klein, Allison (March 19, 2011). "DC Reviving Hall of Fame for Stars of Its Sports World". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
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  38. ^ Hendrix, Steve, "," washingtonpost.com, October 5, 2017.
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  40. ^ Washington Nationals Attendance, Stadiums, and Park Factors
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  45. ^ What’s new at Nationals Park for 2014 MASN
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  47. ^ a b Checking out what’s new at Nationals Park in 2016
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  51. ^ http://dmbalmanac.com/TourShowSet.aspx?id=453056787&tid=110
  52. ^ CONCERT REVIEW: Paul McCartney at Nationals Park Washington Times
  53. ^ "Lorde flies for 19 hours to surprise Taylor Swift fans". The New Zealand Herald. July 14, 2015. Retrieved July 14, 2015.
  54. ^ It's Tay days at Nationals Park, as Taylor Swift takes over
  55. ^ Weiner, Natalie (July 15, 2015). "Taylor Swift & Shirtless Jason Derulo Duet on 'Want to Want Me': Watch". Billboard. Retrieved July 15, 2015.
  56. ^ Billy Joel returning to Nationals Park for July stadium concert WTOP
  57. ^ Elsibai, Nadine (April 17, 2008). "Pope Benedict Says Mass Before 47,000 in New Washington Stadium". Bloomberg L.P. Archived from the original on September 30, 2011. Retrieved April 17, 2008.

External links

2008 Washington Nationals season

The Washington Nationals' 2008 season was the fourth season for the franchise in the District of Columbia, and the 40th since the original team was started in Montreal, Quebec, in 1969. It also marked the first season the Nationals played at Nationals Park. The team finished in last place in the National League East with a record of 59–102, the worst record in Major League Baseball.

2013 New York Mets season

The 2013 New York Mets season was the franchise's 52nd season. The Mets hosted the 84th MLB All-Star Game on July 16 at Citi Field, their home for five seasons. The Mets finished the season with a record of 74–88, finishing third in the National League East Division. The season was the Mets' first non-fourth-place finish since 2008. It was also the final season for Ralph Kiner, who had been with their broadcast team since its first season.

2015 NHL Winter Classic

The 2015 NHL Winter Classic was an outdoor regular season National Hockey League (NHL) game, part of the Winter Classic series, played on January 1, 2015, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. The game, the seventh Winter Classic, matched the Chicago Blackhawks against the Washington Capitals. The Capitals were victorious with a final score of 3–2 after right winger, Troy Brouwer, scored the go-ahead goal with less than 13 seconds remaining in regulation play. This marked the first time in Winter Classic history that the home team won in regulation, the 2010 Winter Classic was the first one to be won by the home team which came in overtime. The game garnered an attendance of 42,832, and was televised nationally in the United States on NBC and in Canada on CBC.

The 2015 Winter Classic marked the Capitals' second victory in as many outdoor games (the first being in the 2011 NHL Winter Classic), and the Blackhawks' second loss in three outdoor games (the previous two being a loss in the 2009 NHL Winter Classic and a victory in the 2014 NHL Stadium Series). The game was one of two to be held outdoors during the 2014–15 NHL season, the other being the 2015 NHL Stadium Series in February.

2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 89th Major League Baseball All-Star Game. The game was hosted by the Washington Nationals and was played at Nationals Park on July 17, 2018. It was televised nationally by Fox. The American League beat the National League 8–6, in 10 innings.

The host city was announced on April 6, 2015, by Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred; it was the fifth All-Star Game in Washington, D.C., and the first since 1969, when the second Washington Senators hosted. It was also the first time that the Nationals had hosted the All-Star Game, and the first time that the Nationals franchise had hosted it since 1982, when the franchise played as the Montreal Expos.

The two leagues came into the game with identical 43–43–2 records and both had scored exactly 361 runs each in All-Star Game history. The game also broke a home run record, as ten home runs were hit in the game; the previous record being six. All but one run was scored by way of a home run. This is the second consecutive game the AL has won in the 10th inning.

The national rating for the game was 5.2, down from 6.5 in 2017.

2018 Major League Baseball Home Run Derby

The 2018 Major League Baseball Home Run Derby was a home run hitting contest between eight batters from Major League Baseball (MLB). The derby was held on July 16, 2018, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., the site of the 2018 MLB All-Star Game. On July 11, the participants were announced. Bryce Harper was the winner, as he beat Kyle Schwarber, in the final 19–18, winning the derby in front of his hometown crowd. He tied Schwarber on the last pitch as time expired in regulation; then won it with 16 seconds left in bonus time.

2019 Atlanta Braves season

The 2019 Atlanta Braves season is the Braves' 54th season in Atlanta, 149th overall, and third season at SunTrust Park.

2019 New York Mets season

The 2019 New York Mets season is the franchise's 58th season and the team's 11th season at Citi Field.

Bustin' Loose (song)

"Bustin' Loose (Part 1)" was a hit song for Chuck Brown & the Soul Searchers. Released from the album of the same name, it spent four weeks at the top of the R&B singles chart in early 1979 and peaked at number 34 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. The Nelly song "Hot in Herre" contains an interpolation of "Bustin' Loose".

"Bustin' Loose" has been played after every home run the Washington Nationals hit at Nationals Park since that stadium's opening in 2008 until the present, with the exception of the 2015 and 2016 seasons, when the Jessie J song "Bang Bang" was played.

Congressional Baseball Game

The Congressional Baseball Game for Charity is an annual baseball game played each summer by members of the United States Congress. The game began as a casual event among colleagues in 1909 and eventually evolved into one of Washington, D.C.'s most anticipated annual pastimes, according to the House of Representatives Office of the Historian. In the game, Republicans and Democrats form separate teams and play against each other.

Today, the game raises money for four charities: the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation, the Washington Literacy Center,, and—following a pre-game practice shooting in 2017—the US Capitol Police Memorial Fund. The game is usually attended by crowds of congressional staffers and, occasionally, even dignitaries and US Presidents.

Great Pierogi Race

The Great Pittsburgh Pierogi Race N'at, commonly called the Great Pierogi Race, is an American mascot race between innings during a Pittsburgh Pirates baseball game that features seven contestants racing in giant pierogi costumes: Potato Pete (blue hat), Jalapeño Hannah (green hat), Cheese Chester (yellow hat), Sauerkraut Saul (red hat), Oliver Onion (purple hat), Bacon Burt (orange hat), and Pizza Penny (checkerboard red and white hat).

The pierogies travel once a year to Miller Park to take on the Milwaukee Brewers' racing sausages (the inspiration for the Pirates' version of the promotion) when the Pirates play the Brewers, as well as to Nationals Park to take on the Washington Nationals' racing U.S. Presidents when the Pirates play the Nationals. Similarly, both the Brewers and Nationals bring their respective characters to PNC Park when they play in Pittsburgh.The Pierogies are often introduced to the opening tune to Run Like Hell from the Pink Floyd album The Wall, and usually race in between the 5th and 6th innings.

Home Run Derby

The Home Run Derby is an annual home run hitting competition in Major League Baseball (MLB) customarily held the day before the MLB All-Star Game, which places the contest on a Monday in July. Since the inaugural derby in 1985, the event has seen several rule changes, evolving from a short outs-based competition, to multiple rounds, and eventually a bracket-style timed event.

List of Washington Nationals Opening Day starting pitchers

The Washington Nationals are a Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise based in Washington, D.C.. They play in the National League East division. The team was known as the Montreal Expos from 1969 to 2004. The first game of the new baseball season for a team is played on Opening Day, and being named the Opening Day starter is an honor, which is often given to the player who is expected to lead the pitching staff that season, though there are various strategic reasons why a team's best pitcher might not start on Opening Day. The Nationals have used six different Opening Day starting pitchers in their fifteen seasons. The six starters have a combined Opening Day record of 3 win, 7 losses and 4 no decisions. No decisions are awarded to the starting pitcher if the game is won or lost after the starting pitcher has left the game, or if the starting pitcher does not pitch at least five innings with the lead. The overall Opening Day record of the team is 4–6.

Liván Hernández and Stephen Strasburg share the franchise record for most Opening Day starts with four. Hernández has a record of 0–3. He also pitched one Opening Day start for the Montreal Expos, in which he received a no-decision. Hernández is the only pitcher to make an Opening Day start for both the Expos and the Nationals. Strasburg has a record of 2–0 with two no decisions.

As the Washington Nationals, the team played their home games at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium from 2005 to 2007; their only home opener there was a 9–2 loss in 2007 by starter John Patterson. Nationals Park is the team's current field, and it was the site of the team's 2008 season opener, with starting pitcher Odalis Pérez on the mound in a game that the Nationals won 3–2 over the visiting Atlanta Braves.

List of Washington Nationals seasons

The Washington Nationals are an American professional baseball team that has been based in Washington, D.C. since 2005. The Nationals are a member of both the Major League Baseball's (MLB) National League Eastern Division and the National League (NL) itself. Since the 2008 season, the Nationals have played in Nationals Park; from 2005 through 2007, the team played in Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium.

The Nationals are the successors to the Montreal Expos, who played in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, from their inception as an expansion team in 1969 through 2004, with the majority of that time (1977–2004) spent in Montreal's Olympic Stadium.

The following takes into account both teams, as all Montreal records were carried with the franchise when it moved to Washington.

List of current Major League Baseball stadiums

The following is a list of Major League Baseball stadiums, their locations, their first year of usage and home teams.

The newest Major League Baseball (MLB) ballpark is SunTrust Park in Cumberland, Georgia, home of the Atlanta Braves, which opened for the 2017 season. Fenway Park in Boston, home of the Boston Red Sox, is the oldest, having opened in 1912.

Nine MLB stadiums do not have corporate naming rights deals: Angel Stadium, Dodger Stadium, Fenway Park, Kauffman Stadium, Marlins Park, Nationals Park, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Wrigley Field, and Yankee Stadium.

Presidents Race

The Presidents Race (known as the GEICO Presidents Race for sponsorship reasons) is a promotional event held at every Washington Nationals home game at Nationals Park, and previously at RFK Stadium, in the middle of the fourth inning of every game. If a game goes to a fourth extra inning (i.e., the 13th inning), a second race is held in the middle of that inning.

The Presidents Race has featured likenesses of seven former Presidents of the United States, four of whom are found on Mount Rushmore: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, and Theodore Roosevelt, plus William Howard Taft (introduced in 2013 and retired after the 2016 season), Calvin Coolidge (who raced for a single season in 2015) and Herbert Hoover (who raced for a single season in 2016). Their nicknames are "George," "Abe," "Tom," "Teddy," "Bill," "Calvin," and "Herbie." The Presidents are typically dressed in Nationals jerseys numbered according to their term as president (1 for George, 3 for Tom, 16 for Abe, 26 for Teddy, 27 for Bill, 30 for Cal, and 31 for Herbie) and topped with giant foam caricature heads. On Sundays, they usually wear period costumes, often referred to as their "Sunday Best" outfits.

In 2017, the Presidents Race at Nationals Park returned to its format of 2006 through 2012, with only the original four Racing Presidents (George, Abe, Tom, and Teddy) competing. Prior to the 2017 season, the Nationals announced that Cal, Herbie, and Bill all had retired permanently to Florida in conjunction with the February 2017 opening of the Nationals′ new spring training facility at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches – renamed The Fitteam Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in February 2018 – in West Palm Beach, Florida. During spring training in 2017, the three retired Presidents began their own series of Presidents Races in the fourth inning of Nationals spring training games in West Palm Beach.Famously, Teddy failed to win a single race for almost seven seasons, even when given head starts or other advantages. Teddy won for the first time on Wednesday afternoon game, October 3, 2012, during the first game played after the Nationals reached the postseason for the first time. Fans and bystanders alike were shocked that his first win was during a weekday afternoon game. Several seasons of success followed for Teddy, but he returned to his winless ways during the 2017 season. However, Teddy did win the first and second race of the 2018 season.

Roger Bossard

Roger Bossard is the head groundskeeper at Guaranteed Rate Field, home of the Chicago White Sox.

Roger joined the White Sox in 1967 working as an assistant to his father, Gene Bossard, and became the official head groundskeeper when his father retired in 1983. Roger is known amongst the industry as "The Sodfather", and is highly influential in the development of new ballparks.

Nineteen of 30 major-league teams use a patented drainage system that Bossard developed specifically for the opening of Guaranteed Rate Field in 1991, including Chase Field in Arizona, Comerica Park in Detroit, Miller Park in Milwaukee, Busch Stadium in St. Louis, T-Mobile Park in Seattle, Nationals Park in Washington, and both Chicago ballparks, including Wrigley Field, as well as spring training complexes for the Cincinnati Reds,the Montreal Expos, the New York Yankees, the St. Louis Cardinals,the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Chicago White Sox.In 1984-85, Roger Bossard designed and built the first natural turf soccer fields in Saudi Arabia for the Royal Family.On Sunday, June 12, 2011, the Chicago White Sox gave out Roger Bossard bobblehead dolls to the first 20,000 fans in attendance vs. the Oakland Athletics.

Shake Shack

Shake Shack (NYSE: SHAK) is an American fast casual restaurant chain based in New York City. It started out as a hot dog cart inside Madison Square Park in 2001, and its popularity steadily grew. In 2004, it moved to a stand within the park, expanding its menu from New York-style hotdogs to one with hamburgers, hotdogs, fries and its namesake milkshakes.

Since its founding, it has been one of the fastest-growing food chains, eventually becoming a public company filing for an initial public offering of stock in late 2014. The offering priced on January 29, 2015; the initial price of its shares was at $21 immediately rising by 123% to $47 on their first day of trading.Shake Shack Inc. owns and operates more than 249 locations both domestically and internationally, typically located in stand-alone restaurants and shopping malls. Shake Shack also operates in stadiums, including Citi Field in New York City, Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Minute Maid Park in Houston, M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, and the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. It also operates airport locations in Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Dubai, Manila and Singapore. There is also an outlet at the Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Southeast (Washington, D.C.)

Southeast (SE or S.E.) is the southeastern quadrant of Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States, and is located south of East Capitol Street and east of South Capitol Street. It includes the Capitol Hill and Anacostia neighborhoods, the Navy Yard, the Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling (JBAB), the U.S. Marine Barracks, the Anacostia River waterfront, Eastern Market, the remains of several Civil War-era forts, historic St. Elizabeths Hospital, RFK Stadium, Nationals Park, and the Congressional Cemetery. It is also contains a landmark known as "The Big Chair," located on Martin Luther King Avenue. The quadrant is split by the Anacostia River, with the portion that is west of the river sometimes referred to as "Near Southeast".

Washington Nationals

The Washington Nationals are a professional baseball team based in Washington, D.C. The Nationals compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) East division. From 2005 to 2007, the team played in RFK Stadium; since 2008 their home stadium has been Nationals Park on South Capitol Street in Southeast D.C., near the Anacostia River.The Nationals are the eighth major league franchise to be based in Washington, D.C., and the first since 1971. The current National League club was founded in 1969 as the Montreal Expos, part of the MLB expansion. The Expos were purchased by Major League Baseball in 2002, and the team was renamed the Nationals and moved to Washington, D.C. before the 2005 season, marking the first franchise relocation in MLB since the third Washington Senators moved to Texas in 1971.

While the team initially struggled after moving to Washington, the Nationals have experienced considerable success in recent years, winning division titles in 2012, 2014, 2016, and 2017, although they have yet to advance out of the first round in the playoffs. Two of the team's first overall picks in the MLB Draft, Stephen Strasburg in 2009 and Bryce Harper in 2010, attracted new levels of attention to the team. At the time of his selection, Strasburg was called the "most-hyped pick in draft history," and Harper later became the youngest position player to be selected to the MLB All-Star Game. Including their time in Montreal, the Nationals are one of two franchises, and the only one in the National League, never to have won a league pennant and played in a World Series, along with the Seattle Mariners of the American League.

Events and tenants
Preceded by
RFK Stadium
Home of the
Washington Nationals 

2008 – present
Succeeded by
Current
Preceded by
RFK Stadium
Home of the
United States Congressional Baseball Game

2008 – present
Succeeded by
Current
Preceded by
Michigan Stadium
Host of the NHL Winter Classic
2015
Succeeded by
Gillette Stadium
Preceded by
Marlins Park(Miami Marlins)
Host of the Major League Baseball All-Star Game
2018
Succeeded by
Progressive Field (Cleveland Indians)
Franchise
Ballparks
Culture and lore
Key personnel
Rivalries
Retired numbers
Division titles (4)
Minor league affiliates
Broadcasting
American
League
National
League
Music venues of Washington, D.C.
Outdoor venues
Theaters and clubs
Arenas
Historic venues

Languages

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