(AP Photo. No pressure, Stephen. No pressure.)
"If people want to judge the pitcher I'll be one year, five years, 10 years down the road based on a couple of outings here, that's out of my control. I'm just here trying to improve my game in every way possible. ...I just want to have a fun time, and learn as much as I can."
(Stephen Strasburg, via Nationals dot com, 10/27/2009)
Happy Days Are Here Again!
After an absolute nightmare in his second Arizona Fall League start, Stephen Strasburg took the first step toward salvaging his professional career with a reportedly sparkling effort against the Surprise Rafters in his third AFL start. Looks like there just might be time for Strasburg to resurrect his professional career. His line, etc.:
Mark Zuckerman from the Washington Times was there, providing a running commentary of Strasburg's start over on Chatter (apparently Zuckerman didn't get the memo that there's a football team in this town in desperate need of media coverage); his account of Strasburg's first inning deserves the Nationals Enquirer copy/paste treatment:
1st inning-- OK, this is my first time seeing Strasburg in person, and I've got to say, it's an impressive sight. He just went through a scoreless inning, issuing a two-out walk to Brandon Laird but otherwise dominating. He struck out the first two batters, Daryl Jones and Jeff Bianchi, throwing three 100 mph fastballs in the process. He made Bianchi look silly on an 0-2 breaking ball in the dirt. Cleanup hitter Ike Davis was the only one to make sollid contact, sending a sharp liner right at second baseman Josh Bell to end the inning. So no runs, no hits, one left on base. 18 pitches, 10 strikes, at least three that hit triple digits.
So there you have it. Not only did SS pitch well, he managed to hit triple digits on the radar gun at least three times in the first inning. Keep it up, Strassy, and you just might prove to be a useful spare part pitching out of a major league bullpen someday!