Nats Fans on the Road: Dodger Stadium

The Nationals played a three game series in Los Angeles. We caught up with fans who traveled to Dodger Stadium. (Nationals Twitter)
The Nationals played a three game series in Los Angeles. We caught up with fans who traveled to Dodger Stadium. (Nationals Twitter)

The Washington Nationals played a three game series against the Dodgers in downtown Los Angeles last week.  Fanfare surrounds the annual west coast trip to Chavez Ravine which is home of the league’s third-oldest ballpark.

We caught up with three fans—Julie A., Lisa D., and Josh M.—who shared stories about their experiences at Dodger Stadium.

Julie A.

Julie, a former Nationals on-field reporter for MASN, was in Los Angeles visiting family during the series.  Some of the most appealing aspects of this series were the pitching matchups.  Wednesday night’s contest between Jordan Zimmermann and Clayton Kershaw was enough to attract the attention of Julie and her father—a former Brooklyn Dodgers fan.

Julie and her father watched the game from some great seats on the field level enjoyed a picturesque view of palm trees and mountains in the distance.  Her seats were not far from the current on-field reporter for the Nationals—Dan Kolko.

Fans who crave unique ballpark fare will hit the jackpot at Dodger Stadium.  Dodger Dogs are one of the most popular choices at the ballpark.  The 10-inch hot dogs can be purchased grilled or steamed.  Fans who prefer an all-beef hot dog should consider the “Super Dodger Dog.”  Julie also recommends the churros as a ballpark snack.

Lisa D.

Lisa permanently moved from Fairfax, Virginia to California in 2013 after attending college in “the golden state” and she has continued to support the Nationals from the West coast.  She traveled to Dodger Stadium on Wednesday to cheer on “her favorite guys.”

Like Julie, Lisa cited the “classic California feel” and the palm trees around the ballpark as aspects that make Dodger Stadium feel unique.  These features, Lisa said, are juxtaposed by the ugly parking lot that spans the 352 acre property.

Lisa also said the atmosphere in Dodger Stadium is much different from the atmosphere at Nationals Park.  Dodgers fans, she said, taunt their own players, visiting players and even the opposing team’s fans.

“They just love to be mean and nasty.  I’ve had food thrown at me for wearing a Nats jersey.  I’ve been yelled at and taunted mercilessly.  All of this without instigating anything.”

Fans who want the California feel, she said, may want to see a game in San Diego.

Josh M.

We caught up with Josh on Monday night shortly after he, his wife and two children made it back home from a vacation that included stops at Petco Park, Angel Stadium of Anaheim, AT&T Park and Dodger Stadium.

Josh bought two tickets, for himself and his son, just a couple of rows behind the Nationals dugout.  In most ballparks, these seats come with their own perks because of close proximity to the players.  The location worked out and Josh and his son had baseballs thrown to them by Michael A. Taylor and Ian Desmond.

His wife and younger son sat in a different part of the ballpark and were surrounded by Dodgers fans.  The two Nats fans, he said, received some “second glances.”

Josh’s experience at the ballpark was marred significantly by his interactions with ushers.  The ushers, Josh said, are very strict about allowing fans into certain sections before the game for pre-game autographs.

“I though some of the Ushers at Nats Park were strict,” he said, “but Dodgers ushers are on a whole other level.”

The Nationals will not return to Dodger Stadium until next year unless they meet in the playoffs.  Check out the playoff schedule here.