Prophecy Update

Some people didn't take too kindly to my prediction that the Nationals would flee to Portland, OR with its tail between its legs in the next 20 years. I used Monday's game as an example of why the team's failure in this city was inevitable. The Nationals, in their second game in their new ballpark, failed to reach 50% of its capacity.

Now, one game is one game. It's no sample size. It's an anecdotal example. Nothing more and nothing less. As one commenter, Pettey, so eloquently put it:

We had a higher percentage of attendance on Monday night then EVERY single ballpark that wasnt hosting an opening day game for their team.

The NCAA championship was on, hence no one in America went to a baseball game. Secondly, it was 20 freaking degrees at the game because of the breeze off of the Anacostia (which will be amazing come July and August).

I can't wait to see the attendance tonight. I'll be commenting again tomorrow morning. Thanks dickweed...

As I noted in my response, his first paragraph is a pretty blatant lie. The Nationals were third in attendance percentage for teams that weren't hosting an Opening Day game.


Out of three.

If you're keeping score at home, Denver's Coors Field opened in 1995. LAnaheim's Angel Stadium opened up way back in 1966.

To be fair to Pettey, his second paragraph was pretty much dead on. There were plenty of external factors working against the home town team. It was pretty chilly that night and a lot of people were probably more interested in seeing the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship. (Congrats, Kansas fans!) Not to mention the Marlins and Nationals are terrible.

Of course, my easy counter-argument is that the granddaddy of all external factors is the brand new field. When new parks open, attendance is supposed to increase accordingly. This isn't happening here. This is a problem.

As for paragraph three, I'm right there with ya, big guy. I checked the attendance first thing this morning too.

Nationals Park capacity: 41,888
Attendance: 23,340

So, a hearty congratulations to the Washington Nationals for, barely, eclipsing the 50% capacity mark in the third game in a brand new stadium. Way to support the home town team, DC! Man, we are really getting a lot of bang out of our 674,000,000.00+ bucks!


  1. Rust, April is the slowest month for attendance. This is what the Orioles spokesman said,
    Team spokesman Greg Bader noted that April is historically the lowest attendance month across the majors, "and games the week after Opening Day are traditionally among the lowest of the season for all teams," he said. FREDTERP

  2. Is baseball attendence walk trhough the gate or tickets sold? I would assume DC with its 10 to 1 ratio of lawyers to normals would have an abnormally high number of season tickets out there that are rarely used just in case the time comes for a good old fashioned kickback..

  3. The attendance count is based on tickets sold. Which is how you can have an announced crowd of 20K when about five thousand of them appear to be disguised as empty seats.

    One factor towards attendance that has been largely overlooked: the Nats seem to have grossly overestimated what the market would bear for tickets. $47 for those red seats in the outfield? Available at the discount price of $40, if you buy full-season tickets. No 20-game plans available out there.

    Come mid-summer, it will be interesting to see which section is more crowded: those red seats, or the $5 seats up in the upper deck.

  4. none of that shit matters. attendance hardly drives MLB's revenue stream. the nationls will stay because of all the white suburban money that has flooded DC since the last time there was a team here. DC is the 5th richest metro area in the country NOT including baltimore. i hate the nats and think the stadium was a retarded deal, but pull your head out of your ass and wise up. the nats arent going anywhere.

  5. I disagree, Ken. Attendance drives a huge chunk of the revenue streams for an MLB team. Gate reciepts are often as much as, or more than, broadcast revenues (both local and national). And this doesn't count the money they make from concessions, merchandise purchased at the games, or parking.

  6. Rusty, maybe you listen to some of your commentors and be a little more constructive. For example, if the stadium isn't able to fill seats in a few weeks, how about letting all the displaced homeless peope live in the outfield stands?

  7. im not implying that gate receipts aren't important but to fret over the second day attendance numbers and the presumed threat they imply to the continued existence of MLB in DC is beyond asinine.

    gate receipts account for a little over a third of the nationals total revenue. media licensing accounts for more.


    even if attendance is lower all year its more than made up for in increased pricing and corporate luxury boxes.

    MLB picked DC because it a huge untapped rich market that will only grow. only an empty headed fucktard would think the nationals future in DC is threatened by Monday's attendance numbers.

    dont be so fucking dense.

  8. It's not just the attendance. It's the apathy and repeated history of failure.

  9. what the fuck does DC and MLB in 1971 have to do with the nationals in 2008? seriously, youre grasping for straws, get a clue.

  10. "It's not just the attendance. It's the apathy and repeated history of failure."

    wow - sounds just like Foxboro in the 1980's......

  11. uh, I work about 5 minutes from the stadium and that "amazing" breeze coming off the Anacostia frequently carries with it a sewage-y scent that's going to make everyone barf up their Ben's Chili Bowl.

  12. t-o-n,

    The Pats were very close to moving to St. Louis or Sacramento or Hartford. Just because they ended up staying doesn't mean that their presence in MA wasn't very, very precarious.

    Ken Dynamo,

    Sports fans in this city suck. It's a one sport town. Three if you count the Attendance Champion Washington Mystics and the DC United. But the WNBA and MLS aren't exactly big time leagues.

    The Caps typically have some of the worst attendance in the NHL. Wizard fans go to the games when their team is good. Even then, they leave overtime games to beat the traffic.

    This city has no patience for failure. This will doom the Nationals.

  13. rusty if you really think that than you are either ignorant or a retard. good luck with that.