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Nationals welcome 10 millionth fan

Nationals welcome 10 millionth fan

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WASHINGTON -- Mark Strattner was sitting at his seat near the third-base line at Nationals Park on Wednesday when he was informed by the club that he was designated the 10 millionth fan to attend a game in Washington since the franchise relocated from Montreal in 2005.

Strattner, a Washington native, was presented with a Ryan Zimmerman signed jersey and two tickets to the Elton John and Billy Joel concert at the ballpark on July 11.

Strattner will also receive four Lexus Presidents Club tickets and field passes to watch batting practice at an upcoming Nationals home game. Additionally, the ballclub will award him an official Nationals Park seat to take home, complete with a plaque recognizing him as the 10 millionth fan in Nationals franchise history.

"It's a great honor. I can't believe the team has been around long enough to have 10 million fans," said Strattner, who is a Nationals season-ticket holder. "I knew it wasn't a joke. Actually, they told me I would be winning a prize."

Team president Stan Kasten voiced his pleasure about Strattner being the 10 millionth fan.

"The Nationals are thrilled to have welcomed their 10 millionth fan tonight at Nationals Park," Kasten said. "We look forward to reaching additional milestones as we continue to grow our fan base and improve the ballclub and fan experience at Nationals Park."

Strattner is a huge Nationals fan and believes the future is bright for the club after the watching the young rotation, which includes John Lannan and Jordan Zimmermann.

"We have to survive this year and I think things will start improving next season," Strattner said. "I love the starting pitchers. I think they are showing great promise."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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