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Strasburg dominant over 3 innings

Aug 13, 2011, 12:04 AM EDT

Updated at 11:05 p.m.

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — If everything goes according to plan, Stephen Strasburg will be pitching for the Washington Nationals in about four weeks.

Anyone among the overflow crowd of 8,619 who watched the rehabbing right-hander toss three spectacular innings Friday night for the Class A Potomac Nationals would have sworn he’s ready to face big-league competition right now.

In his second start of a month-long rehab stint through the Nationals’ farm system, Strasburg dominated the opposing Myrtle Beach Pelicans. He struck out five, didn’t allow a run or issue a walk, regularly hit 98 mph with his fastball, showed off a knee-buckling curveball and a devastating changeup and never allowed a ball to leave the infield.

Oh, and he needed only 33 pitches (26 strikes) to complete his predetermined three innings of work, which meant he had to throw another 17 in the bullpen afterward just to get his work in.

Did that look like a pitcher who isn’t ready to face big-league hitters?

“Not really,” Potomac manager Matt LeCroy said after his team completed a 1-0 victory.
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  1. Anonymous - Aug 13, 2011 at 12:08 AM

    So, why pitch a simulated inning instead of a real 4th inning?

  2. Anonymous - Aug 13, 2011 at 12:14 AM

    I can see you from my seat, Mark! Great pitching. Can't wait until he is back in the majors.

  3. DCGuy7 - Aug 13, 2011 at 12:26 AM

    great to meet you and chat for a bit Mark! dominant is the right word, Stras looked sharp.and, I got to see marks story first – on his laptop, so there!

  4. Sec 3, My Sofa - Aug 13, 2011 at 12:35 AM

    8:08, I'm guessing it's because they can control how long a simulated inning goes.

  5. Gonat - Aug 13, 2011 at 2:30 AM

    QUOTE OF THE YEAR: "I know I'm going to be the pitcher I was. I probably think all the work I've been putting in is going to make me better."

  6. Gonat - Aug 13, 2011 at 2:30 AM

    In other news, I hear Bryce Harper had a Walk Off HR

  7. Gonat - Aug 13, 2011 at 2:35 AM

    Harrisburg was losing 2-1 and Bryce Harper in a 3-2 count hit a 2 run jack for the Walk Off. Nice day by the Nats 2 big Minor Leaguers.

  8. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 3:18 AM

    Hadn't realized that Mark was there until another Insider told me. Didn't see him, although I did see Byron Kerr and some sister Insiders.It was a fun game and I have to say I was surprised at how many folks stayed until the end (although others did leave after SS was out of the game). Early in the game one of the staffers was telling some folks that they would have their choice of seats after SS was done, as 80 percent of the "fans" had left after he exited the game at Hagerstown. As we were walking out after the game was over, it occurred to me that some folks may have stayed later because the Strasburg jersey raffle didn't take place until after the final out. Clever. :-) Anyway, it was an enthusiastic crowd and fun to see so many in attendance at the Pfitz. Wish there would have been such crowds for their playoff games back in the day but oh, well.btw, I was not sporting SS gear. I'm undefeated at the Pfitz in my white curly w t-shirt, and we all know that you don't mess with a streak. Plus, I don't own any SS gear. I didn't win the jersey raffle but I did get a bobblehead. So there's that. Plus I got to see another P-Nats win.

  9. Anonymous - Aug 13, 2011 at 3:23 AM

    I love it that Matt LeCroy is the Potomac manager. Still one of the most colorful guys to wear a Washington Nationals uniform, and that interview he gave after Frank Robinson yanked him for a pitch hitter mid at-bat was classic!

  10. Drew8 - Aug 13, 2011 at 4:10 AM

    Stats to ponder:Ian Desmond OPS .591Adam Dunn OPS .590Jordan Zimmermann ERA 3.23Ross Detwiler ERA 3.20

  11. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 11:34 AM

    I like LeCroy, too, even if he did make Frank cry.Some off-field musings (AKA Deep Thoughts From Natsfan1a):Wonder how many media credentials were requested for this one. Saw a couple of tv trucks there before the game, and looked to be at least one outlet filming when SS was in the game. Plus there were all the folks roaming around with professional caliber cameras. (After that it was evidently: Meh, it's the P-Nats. Whatever. Let's go grab a bite.)Upon returning to the dugout after his bullpen, I noticed that Strasburg high-fived his teammates, which he also did after coming out of the game. (Is that even a verb? But I digress.)Then there's this, hope that SS bought a nice spread for the guys while he was there. Kinda wish the team had raffled off their jerseys, too, but whatever. I suppose some folks may have griped because it lowered their chances of winning the SS jersey. Anyway, I was glad for them that quite a few folks did stay after he was out.

  12. Waddu eye no - Aug 13, 2011 at 2:27 PM

    natsfan1a said…I like LeCroy, too, even if he did make Frank cry.My thoughts exactly. Glad he's aroundMore glad that SS is

  13. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    Teehee, just learned that there's a movement afoot in Texas to discourage the wave.http://espn.go.com/espn/page2/index?id=6816167

  14. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 3:47 PM

    See also this:http://www.stopthewave.net/Wait. The Nat Pack is promoting the wave? Ummm…

  15. Kevin Rusch, Section406 - Aug 13, 2011 at 3:51 PM

    So in the same night, Strasburg was electric, Harper crushed one without getting in trouble, and the Nats beat the Phillies. Not a bad day. Remember last night the next time the Nats give up 8 runs and the whole team strikes out.

  16. BinM - Aug 13, 2011 at 4:26 PM

    @natsfan1a: The people who left the stands after the 3rd all queued up at the press room door (off of the P-Nats locker room) looking for autographs. It was quite the cluster down there. Glad you got there early enough for the bobblehead – I missed out on both that & the jersey raffle, but at least saw the game.

  17. dryw - Aug 13, 2011 at 4:41 PM

    Natsfan1a, the Nat Pack absolutely is promoting the wave. My friend wrote that post based on an incident I pointed out to him at a game a couple of weeks ago. At least one of the Pack guys was running in front of the stands on the 3B side, raising his arms and cheering as the wave went through those sections. I don't know if he actually started it or was just responding, but it was very clear encouragement. Disgusting.

  18. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 4:44 PM

    Thanks, BinM, I suspected that might be the case with the early departures. We aren't too far from the Pfitz and got there at 4:30 to stand in line for half an hour. Looked like they were out of bobbles and raffle tix by 5:15. Typically we get to the Pfitz about 15 minutes before the gates open, and I'd not seen the giveaways run out that fast in prior visits. Evidently it wasn't a record crowd, that having last happened on July 4 of 2009, if memory serves (I think I went to that game but would have to check my scorecard files). Was fun to see the win and a pretty good (multiple) pitchers' duel, to boot. (Speaking of booting, it struck me that there were quite a few errant throws on both sides last night. Heh.)

  19. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 4:47 PM

    Thanks for the background info, dryw. (For those interested in seeing the post in question, scroll down the page at stopthewave.net.)On a related note, am I the only one who finds it disconcerting when Screech stands in the rows facing home plate gesticulating and otherwise making a spectacle of himself when *our* pitcher is on the bump? (And you kids get off my lawn, too!)

  20. Joe Seamhead - Aug 13, 2011 at 4:58 PM

    I thought it was just me. I detest the wave a t baseball games. It was ok 20 some odd years ago when it first got started, but I do not like it in my old age.

  21. Big Cat - Aug 13, 2011 at 5:08 PM

    Harper crushed a curveball over the centerfield fence and over the 30 ft high backgound fence. I swear i'd bring him up to the bigs in Sept and play him in leftfield.

  22. Sec 3, My Sofa - Aug 13, 2011 at 6:00 PM

    it's worse than that, JoeS. I first saw it in Oakland in the late 70's. In the (round) Coliseum, the first time, it was fun. Apparently started in Mexico City, for the football team (the round kind, not the pointy ball kind).

  23. Sec 3, My Sofa - Aug 13, 2011 at 6:17 PM

    A Modest Proposal:We should embrace the wave, and promote it more widely.Start doing the wave at other public events. The next time you are at a theatre-in-the-round, start the wave, maybe during the third act, so that when they ask you to leave, you won't miss so much. With some modifications, it could work in movie theaters, too–maybe back to front, and then reverse. Once people got the hang of that, it could get more complicated–maybe across one row, and then back on the next, and so on, boustrophedon-style. There are lots of opportunities. Jury duty, during voir dire, maybe. On airplanes, during take-offs and landings. Waiting in line at DMV. Might be too complicated at an orgy, but it would be worth a try.But maybe I'm thinking too small. Why limit it to the fans? What if the *players* did the wave during the game, right in the middle of the play?

  24. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 7:12 PM

    I believe that may be what is known as the ¬°Ole! play. :-) Which is not to say that this proposal does not have merit. Because it does…"What if the *players* did the wave during the game, right in the middle of the play?"

  25. JaneB - Aug 13, 2011 at 7:14 PM

    I was wondering if it was the same Matt LeCroy! And I'm glad it is.We were one of the people who left the game in the fifth last night. Hard to see, no backs to the seats, and long drive. For us, it's too long a drive to make again. But I'm glad to have seen the Pfitz, some sister Insiders (still haven't met Michelle S) and that swell Strasburg change up.And Sofa, your wave plan is diabolical. I love it!

  26. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 7:23 PM

    You get a pass, Jane, because your husband is recuperating from that broken leg. Maybe we could meet other sister Insiders at a ballpark baby shower for Mrs. Z. (if she'd be up for it). Indoctrinate the kid into Nats fandom early with plenty of swag and outfits. It's totally okay to be a homer if you're not the beat writer. :-)

  27. Anonymous - Aug 13, 2011 at 8:01 PM

    Question – do you guys think rehab #3 is gonna be at Hagerstown this Wednesday night?

  28. natsfan1a - Aug 13, 2011 at 8:05 PM

    Don't know but I think Hagerstown and Syracuse are the only affiliates who will be at home. Either way, I couldn't make it.

  29. Anonymous - Aug 13, 2011 at 8:26 PM

    If history holds, Stras will throw a side session (if I'm using the lingo properly) on Sunday then Rizzo will announce?

  30. BinM - Aug 13, 2011 at 8:29 PM

    anon 4:01 – Heavy odds on Hagerstown, Aug. 17th for the next SS appearance, as I don't think Rizzo will let him face AAA hitters for another couple of weeks.

  31. Anonymous - Aug 13, 2011 at 8:38 PM

    Cool. I know it's unofficial, but still. Thanks for the help.

  32. Nat in Athens - Aug 14, 2011 at 11:12 AM

    There are three places you can be in baseball: you challenge for the world series or you build towards challenging for the world series; If you do neither the only hope you can hope to give your dwindling fan base is to finish last in order to pick first in the draft and give momentary optimism to them and some movement to your turnstiles. The Nationals are of course not in the first group…yet. The next 42 hours will determine to a large part where we are: sign all four top picks and, coupled with what are encouraging signs at the ML club and on the farm we are clearly in the second group and about two years from starting to move to the first group. Fail to sign them and we are a couple of bad moves from moving to the third one. And in a city that twice lost a team in a few years being in the third group is a dangerous place to be.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 58 47 --
ATLANTA 58 49 1.0
MIAMI 53 54 6.0
NEW YORK 52 56 7.5
PHILADELPHIA 47 61 12.5
Through Wednesday's early games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
THU: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SUN: Phillies at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Orioles at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
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