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The Unhittable (So Far) Stephen Strasburg

Here's a little update from the campus of San Diego State, where right-handed college junior Stephen Strasburg -- the presumed No. 1 pick in the June amateur draft -- is pitching against Air Force...

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Every time Stephen Strasburg takes on absurd expectations, he seems to match them. This is the final home start of his college career. Every seat at Tony Gwynn Stadium is filled. Yes, a sell-out. When I was walking from the parking lot to the stadium entrance earlier today, I saw two people camped out near the gate, asking, "Anybody got tickets?" On Monday, the school released 200 standing-room-only tickets for this game. They were snatched up in two hours.

Through four innings, Strasburg has put on a show. His first pitch hit 100 mph. He's struck out eight batters so far -- including, at one point, six in a row. Though he's walked one, that Air Force baserunner was later caught stealing; thus, the right-hander has faced the minimum.

Strasburg is the rare athlete who forces fans (and even the grizzled media types) into almost reflexive commentary.

Just a sampling of the things I've heard so far...

"It's a man among boys..."

"Jeez. Just, jeez."

"He's on pace for 22 strikeouts."

"We'll have 300 people here [in attendance] tomorrow."

By the way, guess who's camped out eight rows behind home plate? Acting GM Mike Rizzo, scouting director Dana Brown, and baseball operations director Brian Parker. This is Rizzo's first time seeing Strasburg this year. For Brown, it's the third time. I spoke at length to Rizzo and Brown before the game started, and at some later point, I'll transcribe parts of what they said and post it here. But one highlight:

Q: Barring injury, is Strasburg your guy?

RIZZO: If the draft was today, he'd be our guy. But the draft is a month from now, so a lot of things can happen. Guys can turn up their intensity and their performance, a lot of things can happen in a month. But if it was today, he'd be our guy.

By Chico Harlan  |  May 8, 2009; 10:05 PM ET
 
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Next: Strasburg Throws A No-Hitter

Comments

DUNN!!!!!!

Posted by: BGinVA | May 8, 2009 10:22 PM | Report abuse

I am surprised that no one has mentioned that 75% of the Dbacks infield tonight is former Nats property
*******************************************

We have a former D-back on our team (who they got no compensation for when he left) who just crushed one for us. I'll take Dunn over FLop and company and their lack of offense any day.

Posted by: BGinVA | May 8, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

and speaking of former Nats, Chad Cordero and Ray King are in the crowd tonight.

Posted by: BGinVA | May 8, 2009 10:27 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to see the Nats design an all-black uni to wear when Strasburg pitches.

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 8, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Too bad Nick and Dukes hit thier long flys into Death Valley. Dunn's shot didn't go as far. Guess he knows where to hit 'em.
A nice counter point to his first inning dribbler (but still a hit).

Posted by: SackMan | May 8, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Y'know, I'm no Lopez fan but I think it's pretty callous for Carpenter to bring up his dad when 1) they've already made their point re: his attitude and 2) there's a game to call.

But, hey, up 3 and Martis is going good. Go Nats!

Posted by: mrm0to | May 8, 2009 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Petit having the same kind of game as his last half dozen. He's outclassed here.

Posted by: nova_g_man | May 8, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

FLORES!!!

Posted by: patchss | May 8, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Thank you rushfari.
BTW, they're thru six, and ummm, don't ask Carpenter about how Strasburg's doing so far, is all I'm saying.

************
STRASBURG ALERT:
If you want to watch Steven Strasburg pitch tonight (the game started at 9:00 D.C. time), go to goaztecs.com and you'll find the baseball link for the video feed.

Posted by: rushfari | May 8, 2009 9:14 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Real Baseball Intelligence (RBI), a leading resource in the evaluation of amateur baseball talent and draft coverage, has ranked Stephen Strasburg the #1 prospect in the 2009 MLB Draft. View his free scouting report (with video) at withthefirstpick.net/stephen-strasburg

Posted by: bhyman1 | May 8, 2009 10:42 PM | Report abuse

Yes, indeed, rushfari! I don't want to jinx what's happening at Tony Gwynn Stadium, but you should check it out: http://goaztecs.cstv.com/library/live-baseball.html.

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 8, 2009 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Does college baseball do 7 innings or 9?

Posted by: irishnat | May 8, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

They go nine. Think Rizzo's getting his money's worth?

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 8, 2009 10:48 PM | Report abuse

9, Irish

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

BTW, they're thru six, and ummm, don't ask Carpenter about how Strasburg's doing so far, is all I'm saying.
******************************************

Too late...Bob just mentioned it.

Posted by: BGinVA | May 8, 2009 10:53 PM | Report abuse

ooops, you beat me to it, Søren.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 10:53 PM | Report abuse

and this SDSU announcer must be Carpenter's love child -- he keeps saying "it".

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 10:54 PM | Report abuse

He's through eight. OK, Air Force ain't the Mets, but this is pretty exciting.

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 8, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

and they're thru 8 ... record crowd in SDSU of 3,337. (Hey, maybe Kasten can go on the radio there after the draft and invite them on up here!>

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Well, that convinces me. This is Felipe Lopez's good twin.
And I'm thinking NOBODY wants to crash into Dukes, not even Kearns. Can't say I blame him.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 11:00 PM | Report abuse

another misplayed ball by Dukes. Manny do something !!!!

Posted by: JT2009 | May 8, 2009 11:02 PM | Report abuse

love to have whitesell back, and in eck's hands.

Posted by: nova_g_man | May 8, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Way to save this inning, Shairon!

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 8, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Wow, no-hitter with 17 K's. Move up the draft, please...

Posted by: baltova1 | May 8, 2009 11:13 PM | Report abuse

STRASBURG NO HITTER!! Strikes out the side in the 9th! Oh, man, can Rizzo sign him tonight?

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 8, 2009 11:13 PM | Report abuse

No-no is in the books in San Diego. 17 Ks, 2 BBs, 28 batters faced.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 11:14 PM | Report abuse

no hitter for Strasburg along with 17 strikeouts and two walks.

Not bad, huh?

Posted by: rushfari | May 8, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

hey, how did Strasburg do tonight? I haven't heard.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

new post

Posted by: BGinVA | May 8, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

read all about it - gnu

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | May 8, 2009 11:21 PM | Report abuse

I don't think you can blame the ball hit by Young on Dukes,Elijah may have been out of position for a righthanded hitter and all outfield positioning comes from the dugout.

Posted by: dargregmag | May 8, 2009 11:35 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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