ESPN reports that baseball could potentially make more money by contracting the Natxpos and one other team, because the remaining owners would collectively get a bigger cut of the TV contract pie. However, that couldn't happen for a couple years; in the meantime, where do they play? Back in Montreal?
The team is being so melodramatic... it's great. Even though D.C. supposedly has until Dec. 31 to work things out with the team, the Nationals yesterday called off the unveiling of the jerseys, suspended operations, stopped selling merchandise, and even offered to refund season ticket deposits! They're pulling out every scare tactic in the book... but still haven't said where they'll play if it's not here. There's simply nothing lined up for next season at this point.
I have to say again: it's so much fun watch a city pull this on baseball, instead of the other way around. After all the decades of baseball doing the baiting and switching (e.g. the old Nationals Mark II left after less than a decade, and Bud's own Brewers were stolen from Seattle after just one season), seeing the tables finally turned on them is totally worth not getting a team.
ESPN has a good column by Jim Caple that says Cropp's demand doesn't sound unreasonable. And he mentions St. Louis, where the Cardinals are building a new park using almost exclusively private funding.