The Washington Nationals postponed their game Monday night against the Atlanta Braves only after players arrived at Nationals Park and fans on social media questioned why the team would consider playing a game roughly five blocks from the fatal shootings at the Washington Navy Yard.
The Nationals announced the game, scheduled for 7 p.m., had been postponed at 3:14 p.m., about seven hours after the shootings occurred inside Building 197 at the Navy Yard, and shortly after D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier asked citizens to avoid the area.
Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo said the decision to postpone the game until Tuesday, when it will be made up as part of a doubleheader, took time because of “the immense coordination that it takes to make these decisions with federal, state and local authorities. It’s just a timely process.”
“There’s a lot of [logistics] that go into cancelling a game for these reasons,” Rizzo said. “We have to be in contact with federal authorities and the D.C. authorities to have a coordinated effort. And then whenever you cancel a game, MLB is involved, and we have to go through the correct procedures for that.”
District Mayor Vincent C. Gray said in a phone interview that he wasn’t involved with every detail of the postponement, but that he wished the decision had been made earlier. He said he feared letting thousands of people near the area of an ongoing investigation.
Source: Adam Kilgore and James Wagner, The Washington Post