"We decided we'd make it circular," said Purnell, to help discourage cliques and hierarchies among the mega-rich stars and lesser-paid journeymen and younger players who typically compose a big league team. "Then we decided on an oval," he said, because "the oval has to do with the city. You have the Ellipse, you have the Oval Office.
"It's a Washington thing," he said. And it's an all-for-one, one-for-all thing: "If you have a circular table," he noted, "then there is no head of the table."
After all you wouldn't want Cristian Guzman to think he's better than Nook Logan. Or that Mike O'Connor is better than Saul Rivera. That would kill the delicate balance of clubhouse chemistry. And that chemistry is what the Nationals are planning to ride to the top of the NL East. Other teams are planning on using talent, but chemistry is a lot cheaper.
Of course, if Cristian Guzman is still on the Nationals when the new stadium opens next year, there will be other problems.