- - Thursday, July 14, 2016

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Earlier this week, the Washington Nationals put a tweet out on the team’s account that showed a picture of an empty stadium, along with photos of two “Pokemon Go” figures and the following headline, “CF Gates open at 4:30 Friday.”

I don’t think this is what manager Dusty Baker had in mind when he said he wanted more energy from crowds at Nationals Park.

So what can we expect when the team takes the field Friday to open its post-All-Star Game home stand against the Pittsburgh Pirates? Fans running on the field chasing Pokemon Go figures?

The Nationals crowd, as well as the team, is now being graded about how they will perform the rest of the season. Baker indicated while they watch a first-place team, the home crowd isn’t exactly in first place.

“Some of the guys on the team wish our fans were a little more boisterous and crazy, a little bit, like we see at different stadiums on the road,” Baker told reporters. “But we also realize that a lot of our fans are new Nationals fans; that some of them — or a whole bunch of them — were Cubs and Mets (fans) and you know, wherever they come from. That’s the dynamics of D.C., which we realize. But we’re try