Stephen Strasburg Nothing Short of Scintillating in Major League Debut.

Strasburg dazzled America in his MLB debut.

Finally there’s something worth watching in Washington besides the Baltimore Orioles C-Span.   

In one of the most anticipated debuts in major league history, Nationals’ rookie pitcher Stephen Strasburg dominated the hapless Pittsburgh Pirates in route to a 5-2 Washington win.   

The 21-year-old flamethrower struck out 14 Pirates in seven innings (the second most ever in a major league debut) including the last seven batters he faced. Strasburg allowed two runs on four hits, and perhaps most impressive, didn’t walk a single batter.   

Strasburg kept the Pirates guessing all night with a combination of high 90’s fastballs and knee buckling curveballs, showing that he could shutdown major league lineups (albeit, a bad one) as easily as the minor league lineups he subdued during his short Double and Triple-A stints.   

Even with their new pitching stud in tow the Nationals won’t likely be able to contend in a competitive NL East. Still, Strasburg brings a spark to a franchise that has been a punching bag since moving to Washington from Montreal in 2005. With young players like Ryan Zimmerman and Ian Desmond entrenched in the major league lineup, and the recent selection of super prospect Bryce Harper, the Nationals are building a core of players that will allow them to contend for a division title in the next 3-4 years.  

It might just be one start, but Strasburg’s debut could indicate a changing of the guard in the NL East, and his electrifying presence brings hope to a franchise and city that are badly in need.  

And to think, the Mariners could have drafted Strasburg if they had just lost one more game in 2007 (they finished with 101 losses, the Nationals had 102). Of course, when you’ve got Ian Snell and Ryan Rowland-Smith, would the team even have room for him in the starting rotation?  

Slaps forehead…


5 Responses

  1. Do you think he’ll end up as a closer or a starter?

  2. Well, I thought Mark Prior was headed to the Hall-of-Fame so I don’t know if I am the best judge of talent, but I think Strasburg is going to be special no matter what role he pitches in. He’s got more value in the starting rotation so the only way I could see him becoming the closer is if he encounters arm troubles which is a possibility with how hard he throws.

    Regardless, I wish he was a Mariner. He should have been…

  3. Good post Bud, I especially liked the Mariner’s nugget at the end. Strasburg is the LeBron James of the bigs. Watch his career path – it will likely mirror James and when he becomes a free-agent, it’s going to pretty much be the end of the world as we know it.

  4. One more thing, overshadowed by Strasburg’s debut is Buster Posey who is batting a cool .450 with an 18 for 40 in 11 games with the Giants. If both players keep up their strong play, it might a horse race for the ROY!

  5. I haven’t forgotten about Buster Posey; in fact he’s on both of my fantasy baseball teams. Between Strasburg, Leake, Posey, Stanton and Jason Heyward this is shaping up to be one of the greatest classes of rookies in recent memory.

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