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Wednesday June 9, 2010 12:28 am

Phenom Strasburg makes phenomenal debut




Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Athletes, MLB,

Stephen StrasburgSo it’s one win down, 299 to go before Stephen Strasburg guarantees his spot in the Hall of Fame. However, if you’ve seen any of the media attention that’s been given the one-day old big leaguer, his ticket is already punched. The day after the Washington Nationals picked Bryce Harper as the No. 1 pick in the 2010 MLB Draft, the 2009 No. 1 pick stepped up the mound and made sure everybody in attendance knew what the hype was about.

Pittsburgh versus Washington may be hockey’s greatest rivalry right now, but as far as baseball goes, you can hardly get anybody to pay attention. Tonight was different with Strasburg on the mound. The game was sold out as everybody wanted to see first-hand what Strasburg could do in a Nationals uniform. Reportedly as many as 85 out-of-town media requests for accreditation were sent to the Nationals. Needless to say, there’s not usually that many people interested in baseball in Washington, let alone outside of it.

Strasburg himself was fantastic. He threw seven strong innings, throwing 94 pitches, 65 for strikes. He gave up four hits, two runs and walked none. His only blemish was a two out, two run home run given up to Delmon Young in the fourth. The most impressive part of his debut was his 14 strikeouts, including the last seven he faced. His 100mph fastball and 12-6 curve which is scarily close in velocity made the Pirate hitters look silly.

Strasburg’s debut comes at a perfect time for the Nationals. They’re by no means out of a playoff race, despite being last in their division. Strasburg should add some solid help to the rotation for the next couple of months, but don’t expect to see him be a deciding factor. He’ll likely only make 12-15 starts before Washington shuts him down. They want Strasburg to be the ace of their rotation for a long time to come, and giving him just a taste of the big leagues in 2010 is just the next step towards getting him there.

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