Sep 21, 2010, 3:57 AM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
With a paid crowd of only 10,999, there were plenty of empty sections.
As they trickled out of the clubhouse and began warming up for tonight's game, it quickly became obvious to members of the Nationals that they'd be playing in front of a minuscule audience.
"Before the game, we could tell the crowd was down," Jim Riggleman said. "It had all the elements that would cause that to happen."
Indeed, a Monday night contest in late September against a low-profile opponent is a bad combination and leads to small gatherings. Of course, the overriding factor has nothing to do with the night of the week, the time of the year or the name on the visiting team's jersey. It has everything to do with the home team's record and the manner in which it performs on the field.
The Nationals set a new franchise low tonight when only 10,999 seats were sold to paying customers. Then they went out and played down to the crowd, slogging their way through an 8-2 loss to the Astros that featured a seven-run fifth inning in which three errors were committed.
This, of course, was the Nats' fourth straight loss, their 10th loss in 12 games and their 73rd loss in 115 games since hitting theirRead more »
NL EAST STANDINGS
SAT: Nats at Phillies, 7:15 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Phillies, 1:35 p.m.
MON: All-Star break
TUE: All-Star Game at Minneapolis, 8 p.m.
WED: All-Star break
THU: All-Star break
FRI: Brewers at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
Full season schedule
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
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