The schedule's out, courtesy of the Post. The home opener is still the day before my wedding.
Capitol Punishment looks at the general manager candidates now that Bob Watson's out of the picture. It ain't pretty. Kevin Malone?! Pat Gillick just keeps looking better and better.
Speaking of GMs, Cubs broadcaster Steve Stone is no longer Cubs broadcaster Steve Stone. He is a man with ambition:
As for Stone, 57, he has never hid his desire to be a general manager or team president. With the Montreal Expos moving to Washington and seeking a general manager, Stone immediately becomes a top contender for that job -- though he has no front office experience.
''Washington is one of those jobs that seems to have no end of candidates,'' Stone said. ''I've always made a concerted effort to let people know that is something I would like to entertain. I will explore all possibilities.''
Stone seems like a pretty sharp guy. If he wants to be involved in the front office, fine. Hell, I'd even consider him for field manager. But there's no way someone with no experience in operating a ballclub should become GM. You know who has a lot of experience operating a ballclub? Pat Gillick.
General manager isn't the only DC baseball job open, mind you. This site has a whole list of positions to be filled. Unfortunately, I didn't see anything along the lines of "Wanted: sarcastic guy with Blogger account. Hawaiian shirts a plus!" I was surprised not to see listings for third base and shortstop.
Movement on the name issue. This message board thread reports that DC Sports 'n' Entertainment Commission head Mark Tuohey says the team will be named within three weeks and that it'll be Senators or Nationals (thanks to Washington Senator, if that is his real name). Meanwhile, Will "DC's Bid Is Dead" Carroll assures us in the comments to this Ball Wonk post that we'll have the Grays. As soon as I read that, I called Vegas and put everything I own on "not Grays." I do think it will be Senators, only because there's no reason to think that MLB will not take the obvious choice. And because Will Carroll's always wrong.
Eric Fisher has a stadium financing column in the Times, and I think it's important that everyone read it.
No close observer of District politics and the return of baseball to the city
would seriously suggest the stadium bill before the D.C. Council is doomed to
There you go. But what happens if the bill doesn't pass?
No hope of a Washington team. For more than three decades, MLB executives found just about every possible excuse not to give Washington a team to call its own. It ascertained an overwhelming need to expand into Seattle; Toronto; Denver; Miami; Tampa, Fla.; and Phoenix, then an overwhelming need to contract teams. Even the foibles of former mayor Marion Barry were effectively used as the excuse for years.Keep that in mind the next time a stadium opponent claims he wants baseball in the District but doesn't want to pay for it. You can't have one without the other.
But actually turning down a stadium bill would trump all of that and create a permanent memory in the clubby fraternity that is baseball.
Speaking of Barry, George Solomon stole my joke.
Barry, on his watch, tried hard to return baseball to town, likes the game and probably would love seats near the field where he could hear dejected strikeout victims grumble on their way back to the dugout, "the catcher set me up."Fortunately, the fact that I'm some dude with a blog rather than a columnist for a major metropolitan newspaper means that I get to say "the bitch set me up." I'm all about the edgy.