Saturday morning I woke up at 5:30 in the morning to begin my trek to Nationals Park to see the Yankees play at the Nationals in the nations capital. Fast forward to 11:30 AM and I saw the beautiful ballpark for the first time as I drove along the highway towards the parking areas.
Continue to fast forward to 12:00 and I entered the stadium, walked around, and was immediately welcomed by a beautiful entrance area. One of my favorite parts of Yankee Stadium (the main reason I prefer Yankee Stadium over Citi Field) is the entrance (a.k.a. the Great Hall) and how magnificent and welcoming it is. Nationals Park is certainly not the same intense jump out at you experience that Yankee Stadium is, but it's definitely excellent. Immediately you see an abundance of food options in a very spacious area, as well as a glimpse of the field.
Speaking of food, the options are plentiful. Wishing to compare it to Yankee Stadium I munched on the chicken tenders and fries (I'll take the chicken at Nationals Park and the fries at Yankee Stadium) then later ate some Blue Smoke pulled pork. Next time I go back I'm planning on trying the Jamaican food, something that most stadiums do not have.
Finally, I sat down in my seat and was greeted by an absolutely gorgeous field. The Nationals are well represented on the scoreboards, especially by the giant w's you can find throughout the park! By game time the park was essentially filled, something I cannot usually say about Yankee Stadium. Jordan Zimmermann threw his first pitch, and it was time to play ball!
Follow me after the jump for more.Quite possibly the most noticeable difference between Yankees games and the Nationals game was the fans. Almost every out the Nationals fans roared and cheered, and the place was loud, something I cannot say Yankees games are until the late innings. Yankees fans were definitely in attendance, though, leading to many rivaling chants between the two groups of fans.
As the game went on the crowd got louder and the in game entertainment got sillier, but the kids definitely seemed to enjoy that. Teddy Roosevelt was of course robbed of winning the president races, and the t-shirt tosses reminded me of Islanders hockey games, which is never a good thing.
Bryce Harper was well represented in terms of apparel by the fans, but he looked horrendous at the plate. He lost some respect from me, as he did not talk to the media after his 0-7 with 5 k's game. Also, there was a fan in the stands wearing a #34 jersey, but instead of Harper the name said "swag." Sigh.
When Dewayne Wise threw out the runner at the plate the crowd seemed to be split as expected, but the majority seemed to think it was an out. Looking at the replay it was a poor call, but no one would know that in the Stadium, as the Nationals did not show replays. My main complaint about the stadium is that, actually, the Nationals did not show any replays throughout the game.
When the fourteenth inning came around the park was mainly filled with Yankees fans, surprisingly enough. The crowd roared in excitement when the Yankees won, and I walked back to the car after a great day at the ballpark.
If you are considering visiting Nationals Park I definitely recommend it, and would even say I like it equally to Yankee Stadium, if not better than Yankee Stadium.