On a day like today, it's important to reflect on Stan Kasten's role in building this franchise, but that's a task I'll leave to our veteran baseball minds here at MASNsports.com. Because Nats Buzz strives to provide a fan-centric perspective, I wanted to take a moment to reminisce about another side of Stan Kasten -- the fan ambassador.
I have no doubt that many of you met and chatted with Kasten during one of his many strolls around the ballpark. "What? I'm with the people," I once heard him say when a phone call took his attention away from walking the concourse and mingling with fans. And though I can't find the article or blog post about it now, I know that I've read about him trying various food items at different stands throughout the ballpark, just to make sure things were up to standards.
Some friends and I first met Kasten on May 13, 2007 after Ryan Zimmerman's walk off grand slam against the Marlins at RFK Stadium. After two long rain delays, Zimmerman finally ended that game well after 1:00 a.m. in front of a few dozen people. Kasten was kind enough to stop in the concourse for a picture with a couple of die-hard, rain-drenched fans on our way out of the park.
On another occasion that season, he stopped to chat with several groups in our section about a game and even allowed a few of us to examine his World Series ring while he walked away for a half inning.
Kasten was always walking around "with the people" and trying to improve the fan experience at Nationals games.
So, here's my question: What's your favorite Stan Kasten memory, as a fan? And what are your thoughts about his departure?