City Desk

Cheap Seats Daily: Jason Campbell Goes 1-for-7; Adam Dunn Goes 2-for-4

Jason Campbell was 1-7 on Saturday night. That stat'd be a cause for concern if a Nats cleanup hitter posted it at the plate. For a QB in a West Coast offense, it's death.

But, it's only preseason, the team won, he's only in the second year of Jim Zorn's offense, he's had several offensive coordinators in his career, he...ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ...what? where? Oh, sorry...I nodded off going over all the defenses of Campbell.

1-7 stinks. But it ain't that surprising.

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Speaking of same ol': George Michael's gone, but his legacy lives on at WRC.

Michael worked for Dan Snyder but never told his viewers that. Now, we have Lindsay Czarniak, the station's co-lead sportscaster since Michael's departure, wearing licensed Redskins products on the air while working for Snyder's broadcasting department. And we have her partner Dan Hellie co-hosting "The Jim Zorn Show" with Larry Weisman, a Dan Snyder staffer who writes press releases disguised as news stories for the team. Just as the Redskins web site teases Czarniak's work on preseason games, the team teases Hellie's work on "The Jim Zorn Show."

Snyder owns both broadcasts.

Hellie and Czarniak, despite the infomercial work and how silly it makes the WRC news operation look, are still allowed to report on the Redskins for WRC's news shows.

That's the way the station's boss wants it.

AFTER THE JUMP: Still whining about WRC reporters being BFF's with Dan Snyder? Will Tom Sherwood give speeches for the mayor? Snyder creates Trickle-Down-Gouge-enomics? Beckham can't score in DC? Dunn and Zimmerman are copycat sluggers?

Michael Jack, president and general manager of WRC-TV/NBC4, said so in a press release from the Redskins Park in February that announced that Channel 4's journalists were now beholden to Snyder, and would work on the FIVE (!) weekly Snyder-produced Redskins infomercials the station will broadcast: “We think the NBC brand and our No. 1 rated newscasts, combined with the Redskins brand, will be the perfect fit as we look to produce year-round programming,” said Jack, who probably learned a lot about the profitability of selling out to the Redskins from Michael before canning the sportscasting legend last year.

In the same release, Janice Schmidt, a Redskins senior vice president,  gushed that the team was "pleased to expand our relationship" with WRC, and how great it was to see "the No. 1 television station and the No. 1 sports team in Washington joining forces."

Why stop with just selling out to the Redskins, Mr. Jack? Why not have Tom Sherwood give speeches for Mayor Fenty? And get Pat Collins to go gang-banging for MS-13!

Is Jim Vance OK with all this crap?

I'll stop typing these conflict-of-interest rants just as soon as I get my invitation to the WRC news department's Redskins salon! I know it's coming!

***

The FanZone, a private parking lot near FedExField did gangbuster business.

The FanZone positioned itself as the anti-Snyder Parking Lot. It was marketed by WJFK, Dan Snyder's competition in the sportstalk radio realm, with longer hours, no tailgating restrictions — and a discounted price.

"While some tailgating has been toned down" read the pitch, "we’re taking it to the next level! We're opening early and staying open late."

A season pass cost $300, or $50 cheaper than Snyder's cheapest parking pass.

There's no mention of FedExField or the Redskins anywhere in the solicitation.

The FanZone passes sold out for the season in no time flat.

Nobody in their right brain would pay $300 for parking in middle-of-nowhere PG County before Dan Snyder bought property there. Now, all because of Snyder, $300 is a bargain!

Forget supply-side or demand-side! Snyder's the leader of the Gouge-Side School of Economics.

***

More than 22,000 came to RFK to see David Beckham and his Los Angeles Galaxy mates not score against DC United on Saturday. Remember when Beckham sold out the stadium and had Craigslist all atwitter with scalping offers? Seems like only yesterday.

There are few things sadder in the sports page than the box score of a 0-0 match. The Washington Post's Steven Goff reports that United was without Coach Tom Soehn because of a suspected case of swine flu. It's the new sports hernia.

***

Texas Monthly has an incredible feature on Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach. What a guy. There's no local connection to this story, 'cept I went to school there, and Leach is the first Techster the national media has cared about since longtime DC resident John Hinckley. But even if you've never been to Lubbock, you'll love Leach and the story, or I'll refund the time and money you spent reading it.

***

The Nats only got 26,307 for Friday night's loss to Milwaukee, despite the Lerners flooding the market with $1 tickets. I figured a much bigger crowd woulda showed on the day the team introduced The Future. The weather must have mussed everything up.

Then only 19,000 and change showed up for Saturday night's loss, despite all the goodwill from the Strasburg signing and even though it was Frank Howard Bobblehead Night.

On Sunday, the Nationals ended the long post-signing losing streak and avoided yet another sweep.

Ever notice that whenever Adam Dunn hits a homer, Ryan Zimmerman does, too? It's spooky.

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Story tips? Wanna Play the Feud? Tube amps for sale? Send to: cheapseats@washingtoncitypaper.com

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  • Jim

    It's pretty amazing that news organizations send reporters like Czarniak and George Michael out to cover stories when their biases will obviously color the way the story is told. I'm curious, though, what your thoughts are about your co-worker Riggs covering a protest that he has stated his opposition to long before ever arriving at the protest?

    I've been quite curious about how editors at the CP feel about this. None have weighed in yet on whether they think this is good or responsible journalism.

  • Dave McKenna

    Riggs wasn't being paid to feel the way he feels. as the great philosopher cyndi lauper said: Money Changes Everything. WRC's news people are paid to pump up the redskins. that's amazing. it makes everybody on the WRC news staff look like shills. i can't believe old-school WRC guys like tom sherwood and jim vance like being sold out by the boss, but, as everybody says, "In this economy...."

  • Adams Morgan

    Pat Collins gang-banging for MS-13...thank you Dave McKenna for giving me something to chuckle about on a Monday...

  • Angry Al Gonzales

    Chase Daniel was cloned from Joe Montana. Right now da Bears are cloning Bronco Nagurski.

    Jason will be gone by mid-season. Colt & Chase will have a face-off & a name-off; Chase will win & will QB the Skins to a good finish, going 4-2 in the last six games, but the year will be a bust - seven wins, nine losses, last place in the NFC East.

    Skins next title comes in 2076. See you then. Stay tuned.

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