Added another new ballpark to the list over the weekend when I visited Nationals Park in Washington. Call me underwhelmed. While the Nats' new park is much nicer than old RFK Stadium, that's not saying much.
The real problem I have with Nationals Park is that the rounded upper decks make it look like one of the old cookie-cutter parks. From the outside, it looks more like a government building than it does a ballpark. According to some of the locals I talked to, the Nats didn't want a "retro" park because of the presence of beautiful Camden Yards, just up the road in Baltimore. That's not very good motivation. There are enough unique retro parks around that are nothing like Camden Yards, the original retro park. PNC Park in Pittsburgh looks nothing like Camden, and it's a real beauty.
As for the Cubs, they played Sunday like they could have used a day off. Still, they're in first place, and there's not real reason to panic. One thing I'd like to see them junk is the attempted steal of third base. Ryan Theriot and Derrek Lee both were thrown out at third over the weekend when a steal was totally unnecessary. For the steal to be worth the risk, a team should have a success rate of at least 75 percent, and the Cubs are sitting at two-thirds.
The Brewers hit town tomorrow for the second time in April. And to think they have a domed stadium that the Cubs won't visit until late July.