The Washington Nationals have heard fans’ cries about broadcasts at local bars and restaurants, and they have an answer.
The team Friday announced the “Curly W Restaurant and Bar Alliance,” a promotional group commissaries from Maryland to North Carolina can join in exchange for perks for patrons.
Eateries can join the Alliance if they have at least one television and pledge to show every Nationals game, according to the announcement. In exchange, the ballclub will provide a “bar kit” of decorations and fan handouts, such as koozies, hats, bottle openers and ticket discount vouchers.
The team will also periodically distribute promotional items and prizes — including free tickets — in exchange for participating.
Thirty-seven establishments have already joined the Alliance, according to the Nationals.
Business proprietors can email NRBA@nationals.com for more information.
The team’s move is a step forward for the distribution of Nationals broadcasts, which are controlled by MASN, owner of exclusive TV rights of the Baltimore Orioles and Nationals. That means in both cities, Orioles and Nationals games won’t be broadcast over public airwaves for the first time in years, and non-pay TV subscribers still cannot stream games on MASN or MASN2.
But even in bars and restaurants that did have cable, Nationals games haven’t always been on.
“I’ve been to dozens of local bars and restaurants and cannot tell you how often the Nats aren’t on, and how often no one seems to care,” Danny Rouhier, a host on 106.7 The Fan, wrote in a D.C. Sports Bog guest post in 2016. “I can’t tell you how many people tweet me or see me at Nationals Park or other spots around town and tell me they’ve had the same experience.”
Well, maybe now more bars and restaurants will have the game on — and some Nationals flags flying for good measure.
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