Nats New Store is Puzzling
The Nats opened a new retail store earlier this week, on Connecticut and L, which is the same building where they had the "Let's Get Acta-vated" press conference, and where, according to today's Post, they're going to have offices.
I went by the store on Wednesday. I wasn't going to blog about this, because I hate to always be so negative about the Nationals. But the store, which is very small, is not exactly chock-full of treasurers. When you walk in, the first thing that you see is a display of "game-used" jerseys. Which is fine. Until you see that they're jerseys that were "game-used" by Nationals greats like Endy Chavez, Mike Stanton, Rick Short, Brendan Harris, Tohma Ohka and Darrell Rasner. That's it. These cost $199 to $299. Darrell Rasner pitched like 7 innings for the Nats. And they didn't even let him keep his jersey? I'd feel sorry for him if he wasn't with the Yankees now. Who's going to buy these things? Brendan Harris went to William and Mary (a moot court school, that's put out some good baseball players lately), so maybe one of his former roommates works downtown and will grab that one. But Tohma Ohka? It would be a clever gag Christmas gift for Frank Robinson, but who even knows how to reach Frank anymore.
The jerseys are just an appetizer, though, to the true treasures at the Nationals store -- game used bats. More specifically -- a bat used by that legendary National....Damien Jackson! He of the 23 hits and .198 average in his 67 game career with the Nationals. How'd they wrestle that away from the Hall of Fame? The crazy thing about it is that the bat looks like it's about 100 years old, it's got all kinds of pine tar and tape and ball marks and stuff. It looks like something used by someone that could actually hit. I'm not sure how many bats a monster like Jackson goes through in a year, but it's possible that he used that bat for all 23 of his hits for the Nats. And this can be yours for $189!
As I said, I tried to not blog about this, as I'd like to give the Nationals a break, and the guys at the store were very nice and pretty much aware of how lame it was to be selling game-used equipment by guys who were barely on the team, while not having any (game-used or otherwise) Ryan Zimmerman or Chad Cordero jerseys (which, they say, may be in by Christmas). One of them even laughed when I observed that the Jackson bat looked broken, and "no wonder he couldn't hit." But, geez. I can't understand how a team can not have jerseys of their most beloved players available a month before Christmas. I just kind of feel insulted by such a lame attempt, and it makes me continue to feel that the people that are making these kind of decisions about things for the Nationals don't really have much of an idea about what they're doing.