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Did Strasburg hit 103?

I wasn't watching the Nationals Park radar reading after every Strasburg pitch, but every time I looked it was 97 or 98 or 99 or thereabouts. I heard rumors that he had hit triple digits at some point, and Adam Kilgore reported that Strasburg's last four fastballs were clocked at 98, 98, 99, 99. And at least on the MASN2 broadcast, at least one of the Strasburg heaters touched 103 mph.

"I think the gun broke on that last one," Rob Dibble observed in the clip. "I thought I saw a hundred and three."

That's sure what it looks like to me. Making it even more impressive, that speed bomb was in Strasburg's seventh and final inning of work.

"He really didn't start establishing the four-seam fastball until the fifth-inning, when he really started pumping it in," Jim Bowden told CSN after the game.

Imagine what he'd have done if he pitched into the ninth.

(Bowden's best quote: "It's good to see that baseball's back in Washington.")

(Via @wizardsextreme)

By Dan Steinberg  |  June 9, 2010; 1:07 AM ET
Categories:  Nats  
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Next: A Strasburg strikeout, from the bleachers


While his fastball was AMAZING last night and he definitely was throwing gas...there's virtually no chance he legitmately hit 103 miles-per-hour. Stadium radar guns are notorious for adding a few MPH. There are reports from other sites that other guns only had him hitting triple digits on 2 or 3 pitches all night, each at exactly 100. Most of the other really hard stuff was 98 or 99.

Posted by: jhcarson | June 9, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

The stadium scoreboard reported several pitches at 100 that I saw (3 times, as I recall). Didn't see any faster, but of course I didn't look after every pitch.

Posted by: CDRHoek | June 9, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

I've heard the story about radar guns being "notoriously fast" before. But how do you explain the 69 mph curve, or whatever he wants to call it early in the game? Was that one really 67?

Posted by: tha_prophet | June 9, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

103 is pretty hard to believe, I just can't square that with the 69 mph slurve. It can't be both notoriously fast and slow, can it?

Posted by: tha_prophet | June 9, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

What's the big deal? The Tigers have had 2 pitchers for years that thow over 100mph. Zumaya has been clocked at 103mph many times, and Verlander at 101mph, including in later innings. Rodney, who left the team before this season, was also up near 98-99 regularly.

Posted by: lsoprano | June 9, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

The exact speed doesn't really matter. A fastball in the high 90s w/ good movement is unhittable unless the batter gets lucky. Combine that w/ a drop-off the table curve ball and a mid-90s slider and the hitter would probably be better off just trying to bunt for a hit.

Posted by: randysbailin | June 9, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

What was more impressive than the 100+ MPH pitched referred to here was that the next pitch was a well placed sub-90 MPH that simply stoned the batter and made him look ridiculous. Control and range like that is brilliant to watch.

Posted by: arod69 | June 9, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

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