Lerner On Kasten, Rizzo, Gonzalez

Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner told Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post that ticket sales are up this year and that he’s hoping “all the hype turns into reality.” Lerner weighed in on an assortment of Nationals-related topics; here are the details:

  • Lerner said he doesn’t know or care how valuable the Nationals are. “It’s not something we’re ever going to get rid of,” he said.
  • Though Stan Kasten isn’t prohibited from hiring Nationals employees, Lerner doesn’t expect the new Dodgers executive to lure Washington’s front office staff to Los Angeles. “Stan is an honorable man,” Lerner said. “He wouldn’t do that.”
  • People close to GM Mike Rizzo say it’s doubtful he’d be willing to work under Kasten again. It’s unlikely that Rizzo would have as much autonomy working under his former boss.
  • Rizzo signed a five-year extension following the 2010 season and Lerner said he hasn’t considered discussing another extension just yet. However, he praised his GM’s work and suggested a new deal will occur eventually. “When the time comes, I’m sure we’ll have discussions with Mike.”
  • Lerner called the Gio Gonzalez trade a bold move that the Nationals couldn’t have made a year ago.