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Senator Bob Casey doesn’t like the Nationals trying to block Philly fans

Feb 13, 2012, 9:50 AM EDT

Phillies fans AP

We learned recently that the Washington Nationals are going to try to keep Phillies fans from invading their ballpark during the May 4-6 series in D.C.  To do so they have limited ticket sales to that series to people from Washington, Maryland and Virginia.

The effort is kind of dumb, easily circumvented and likely will be counterproductive — if I were a Phillies fan I’d look like this right now — but that hasn’t stopped Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey’s shorts from getting all bunched up in his nether regions about it:


Eh, like I said. I don’t think Phillies fans are going to be all that deterred by this effort. I’m guessing that through sheer determination, spite and StubHub, Nationals Park will be full of the Philly faithful come May 4-6.

  1. runyetirun - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:06 AM

    Here’s what keeps being left out of every story on this topic: the Nats aren’t “blocking” Philly fans from buying tickets to these games per-se, its just that they’re only allowing Nats fans to buy the tickets EARLY. The hope is that by having a lot of Nats fans get tickets in advance of them going on sale to the public, there will be less available to the invaders. However, my impression is that once single game tickets go on sale, anyone will be able to buy tickets to this series like usual.

    It’s absurd that a United States senator (and a back-bench nobody at that) is making a thing out of this, particularly since he only seems to have a fraction of the facts.

    • kopy - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:09 AM

      Don’t most teams do this? I know the Brewers’ single-game tickets go on sale for the first time in person at the stadium a day before they are launched on the internet. This means that only people who physically drive to Miller Park have the first crack at tickets, which filters out many out-of-town fans.

    • paperlions - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:11 AM

      In the Senator’s defense, a fraction of the facts is what he is used to working with in his day job.

      • alang3131982 - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:04 PM

        I’d ask Senator Casey if it’s also fair that I live in Washington, D.C. yet dont get the same levels of representative in our federal government than Philadelphians. yes, let’s focus on baseball and tickets, but not inequities in our government – that makes sense.

        This is a marketing ploy pure and simple — similar to what the Caps pulled off years ago. The Nats are trying to create a buzz and stir excitement among their fan base — good on them.

  2. kopy - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:07 AM

    Wow. It’s the Nationals’ stadium. They have every right to do whatever they want. That being said, the effectiveness of this is highly questionable anyway. It reminds me of how the Vikings used to require buyers to purchase an additional Vikings home game at a reduced price if they bought tickets to the Packers game – the idea being to keep as many Wisconsinites away as possible. The StubHub era has changed all this.

    • kellyb9 - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:13 AM

      I tend to disagree. Perhaps, I’m generalizing, but I don’t think any business should have the ability to stop you from buying their goods or services because of your address. That’s really what this boils down to in my opinion. That being said, it won’t help… most people buy their tickets off of stubhub.

      • Utley's Hair - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:25 AM

        There is the whole thing about interstarte commerce and all.

      • 18thstreet - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:03 AM

        Pish-posh. There’s nothing in the Constitution about Congress being able to regulate interstate commerce.

        Ron Paul is the answer!

      • paperlions - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:18 AM

        You should let MLB know about this….considering the fact that which games I can watch on TV (or MLB.TV) are determined by my address.

        In other news, businesses all over the place discriminate based on addresses, most service companies only service a certain area…if you live outside of it, they will not come by…even if you offer to cover additional costs. Businesses that do not ship also do the same thing, but more passively…if you live too far from the store to drive to it…well, they won’t sell you anything. Other businesses will not ship to Alaska, Hawaii, or to certain countries. In other words, what the Nats are doing is not uncommon (and likely most teams have some version of this built into their ticket selling strategy).

      • frankvzappa - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:01 PM

        I second all comments supporting Ron Paul. And to anybody who thinks Senator Casey should stick to politics, keep in mind that the senate voted 93-7 to abolish your fundamental 4th amendment right to due process and a trial by jury. So maybe we should be hoping that politicians distract themselves with other things for a little while and it would give us all some reprieve from the rapid onset of fascism.

      • 18thstreet - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:14 PM

        Good G-d, I love Ron Paul supporters.

      • Utley's Hair - Feb 13, 2012 at 4:29 PM

        So, that little clause saying that ya know “The Congress shall have Power…To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes…” doesn’t exist? Well, damn…I guess I need my eyes checked.

      • 18thstreet - Feb 13, 2012 at 5:01 PM

        THIS! THIS! This is why I have to use the sarcasm tag.


        If Ron Paul is the answer, the question is, “Who said the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a bad thing?” Or “Who doesn’t understand economics?”

      • 18thstreet - Feb 13, 2012 at 5:03 PM,2849/

        “Area Man Passionate Defender Of What He Imagines Constitution To Be”

      • Utley's Hair - Feb 13, 2012 at 7:00 PM

        Damn, 18th. I refreshed the screen right before I replied to that, and your second Ron Paul comment wasn’t there. But there it is, now. Of course I wouldn’t have posted my reply if I had seen it. Sorry.

    • 18thstreet - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:03 AM

      It’s a publicly financed stadium. The taxpayers of DC own it. They can’t do whatever they want.

      If they wanted to do whatever they wanted, they should have built it themselves.

  3. flyerscup2010 - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    this is hokey on his part, but bob casey is a good senator. especially considering he beat rick santorum by 17% to take his senate seat.

  4. dagnats - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:19 AM

    its not preventing anyone from buying anything…only giving nats fans first dibs on tickets…not really a big deal…its better than what the orioles were doing “oh you want to see the red sox/yankees game? then you have to buy a ticket package that includes games against the mariners, A’s, and royals…”

    • natstowngreg - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:09 PM

      That’s not unusual. We have Nats half-season tickets. To get Yankees and Rays games, and extra Opening Day tockets, we have to take tickets to at least one Astros and one Pirates game. And tickets to an exhibition game against the Red Sox (though they’re half-price).

  5. The Dangerous Mabry - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    The whole thing really comes across to me as a ploy to get Phillies fans to buy even more tickets and ensure that the games sell as well as possible. “You Phillies fans can’t come into our park! Oh wait, you spent a ton of money buying tickets and concessions here? Boy, you showed us.”

  6. Phillies Homer - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:31 AM

    I believe this will be counter productive. I travel with this group called the Green Legion (Eagles) who has a spinoff group called Philly Phever… anyways… The guy who runs it, in response to this D.C. block of Philly fans, has reduced the price of this trip to get more Philly Faithful down there.

    I’m sure he is not the only group that will do this. And I’m sure more Phillies fans who live in the D.C. area will be more apt to purchase tickets b/c of this “block”.

    But, even if the Nats make it, at best, a 50/50 ratio of fans. Philly fans are louder! :)

    • natstowngreg - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:13 PM

      And more obnoxious. Don’t forget, more obnoxious.

      Not all of them. I’ve met some OK Phillies’ fans at Nats Park. But they’re the minority.

      • Phillies Homer - Feb 13, 2012 at 3:24 PM

        Maybe… eh… probably. I know I enjoyed myself down there last time. Me and a buddy mucked it up with some Nats fans. Everytime Jayson Werth came up to bat, we bet a beer that he wouldn’t get on base. Ended up a wash… he went 1-3 with a walk!

  7. Panda Claus - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:40 AM

    The easiest and most proven way to shutup opposing fans is for the home team to win.

    Out-of-town money is still collected to fill the seats, then the visiting fans get to make the long drive home after a loss by their team.

    But if you are going to venture into another team’s home ballpark, have the courtesy to not make an arse of yourself. The in-your-face arrogance by invading fans is what starts most trouble. Well, that and a splash or two of alcohol.

  8. Old Gator - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:59 AM

    The Gnats should spend less time fretting about home field advantage and more time figuring out ways to soak the Feelies fans who do attend. Howsabout dropping this ridiculous pre-vendetta and setting up more carts in the lobby selling horrible horsemeat and Velveeta™ sandwiches and watered-down beer? You’re in this to make a buck, remember?

    • natstowngreg - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:16 PM

      Oh, the Nats are doing a fine job of raking in the concession money, from Nats and Phillies fans alike. Not sure poisoning fans is the answer.

  9. heynerdlinger - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:10 AM

    The real motivation here is not to actually block out Phillies fans, but to increase the total number of tickets sold.

    The only way that offering “first dibs” to Nats fans is going to block Phillies fans is if they actually sell out the park. This might then price-out some of the non-local fans on the secondary market. However, Nationals Park isn’t likely to sell out. Instead, they might get a few more local fans to buy up the tickets in a futile effort to keep the hordes away.

    In any case, the park is not likely to be close to sold out without a heavy influx of fans from the opposing team, so they’re really just picking at the margins here.

  10. damnyankee13 - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    personally, I dont know, but this article is tell9ng me that the Nats do not have many fans.

    • natstowngreg - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:26 PM

      Partially true. The Nats have fans, but the team hasn’t played well enough to attract the front-runners to the ballpark. They showed up in 2005 for the new team, then left when the team started losing. They showed up in 2008 for the new ballpark, then left because the team stunk.

      This may be the season when the front-runners start showing up again, taking some seats from the Phillies infestation. As well as the Yankees and Red Sox infestations, which appear every 6 years.

  11. kiwicricket - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    Politicians are on twitter???

    • Utley's Hair - Feb 13, 2012 at 11:44 AM

      Oh yeah. Hell, they even tweet from their seats during the State of the Union Address.

      • kiwicricket - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:21 PM

        Still beats what a couple of my local elected officials do with their time in Parliament….

  12. drunkenhooliganism - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:05 PM

    This is clearly a ploy to get free publicity and to get the Phillies’ fans to spite them and buy tickets (interest probably waned after a few years of making the trip).

    The proper way for Phillies’ fans to react would be to NOT go to DC.

  13. ocho - Feb 13, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    Why would they want to block the Phillies fans? How will Nats fans revel in the expression on Phillies fan’s faces after a Ryan Zimmerman walk-off HR as they have the past 2 seasons?

    PS Bob Casey needs to know whats going on before he speaks, as someone else pointed out the Nats are opening ticket purchases to MD/VA/DC fans in advance barring a sellout (which they havent had probably since opening day 2011) everyone can purchase a ticket.

  14. dcfan4life - Feb 13, 2012 at 3:46 PM

    The Nationals are on the rise. I expect if there winning ways to continue this wont even be an issue. This may be the toughest division in baseball this season with only the lowly Mets probably not contending. The reason i dont want Philly fans in my ballpark is because there terrible sports. Insanely mean or inappropriate chants, violent outbursts at there team as well as the opponants, and plenty of crazy drunks. It makes taking your kids to the park a harder thing to do when playing the Phillies. I do question the senators sanity when he quotes Philly fans as the best when the rest of the country collectively think they are among the worst.

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