Bob, the guy who did the tour, was awesome and said "Welcome to Nationals Park, home of the first place Washington Nationals! I never get sick of saying that. I almost have to pinch myself every time!" He was fabulous and the tour was fun. Want photos? Here! (Sorry they just came out ok, I had no idea there would be a tour and my phone camera is not so great.)
The view from the press box. The highest in the MLB, and apparently the journalists complain that they're too far away, but I think it's a gorgeous view. This is also the background on my phone now.
After the press box, we went straight to the clubhouse, aka the locker room. I think this is the most beautiful locker room I've ever seen.
The comfy chairs in the middle were my favorite part. A far cry from the folding chairs and benches you see in movies.
MLB uniform regulation posters right outside the locker room. They were up in both English and Spanish.
Bat science! How to cut down on broken bats, which are not only annoying, but can be dangerous to players, umps, and fans. The photo to the right is of Ryan Zimmerman, after hitting a 2-out, 3-run walk-off homer on July 4, 2006, during his first (full) rookie season (he was called up in September of 2005 and played just a couple of games that year).
Batting cages back behind the clubhouse. Much better warm-up for pinch hitters late in the game than a couple of swings in the tunnel like they used to do.
The stairway down to the tunnel.
Quote from Joe DiMaggio in the tunnel, the last thing any Nat sees before taking the field. I wish I'd gotten the photo of the heavy bag hanging in a little alcove off to the left just before getting up to the field- as the tour guide said, if that game where Bryce Harper threw the bat against the wall had been at home, he could have just hit the bag a couple of times, and not had to get stitches.
The dugout, from right on the field! The tour guide said "so you'll notice that Danny Espinosa, who's only a sophomore, has two places for his batting helmet, while veteran Ryan Zimmerman only has one, anyone know why that is?" and I was like "Cause Danny's a switch hitter and has a helmet for each side..." and then I realized that I'd referred to a player by his first name and that was weird. Oops.
My photo of the field from the dugout didn't come out well, so here's one standing up on the field in front of the dugout <3
Today, the Washington Nationals sponsored a blood drive, administered by INOVA, held at the ballpark, since the Nats are on the road. If you donated blood, you got two free tickets to a game (in the 400-level) and a t-shirt that says "Give blood? I do" with the Nats' curly W logo. I got rejected for having iron-deficiency anemia, a condition I was already aware of but had been working on. So while a couple of people went "Your iron is only 9.7?!", that's actually not bad, because last time it was below 8 (has to be 12.5 to donate). AND they gave me tickets and a t-shirt even though they rejected me. My mom also got rejected, though her iron was 12.4, which is just silly, and she got her tickets, too. And THEN they told us we could do a free tour of the park right then. We said HELL YES and did a tour. It was very, very cool. Nationals Park is only in its fifth season and it's still one of the nicest parks in the league.