March 23, 2008 [LINK / comment]

First game at Nationals Park!

The first-ever baseball game at Nationals Park was played yesterday, and the George Washington University defeated St. Joseph's University, 9-4. The Washington Post reports that the stadium is just about "ready for prime time," so I have upped its completion status from 98% to 99%.

The Post also published a "love letter to RFK Stadium" from Rocco Zappone, an old Senators (II) fan who was traumatized by the 1971 relocation to Texas. For decades, he held out hopes for a new team in Washington, only to be disappointed each time, so that by the time the relocation of the Expos was announced in September 2004, he "felt an odd sense of detachment." Nevertheless, the experience of attending Nationals games as 2005 progressed gradually brought back his feeling for "frumpy, dumpy old RFK Stadium." So now, he has mixed feelings about the impending opening of the new ballpark on the Anacostia: "The real measure of Nationals Park will be whether boys and girls who see their first games here come to feel the same affection for this place that I now feel for RFK."

The mail bag

I've had some thoughtful messages in the last week or so, but unfortunately I haven't been able to respond as of yet. However, I did get a neat tip from Bruce Orser: A video excerpt from the Buster Keaton (silent) movie The Cameraman (1928) in which he performed a scene in Yankee Stadium. It is a sight to behold, live and in living black and white. For more info on the movie, see