The Stephen Strasburg debut arrived last night and everything appeared to be in place for a spectacular start.
Between the talented Strasburg and the foresight to have him face the Pirates,all was in order and Strasburg gave everyone (except Pirate fans) what they wanted in a 5-2 Washington win.
Strasburg struck out 14 Bucs,but ,due to a two run Delwyn Young homer (3),was still down 2-1 at the end of five.
Losing pitcher Jeff Karstens (1-2) allowed two sixth inning homers and that was all she wrote.
Brad Lincoln makes his long awaited debut in Washington debut,if the rain allows against the Nationals John Lannan (2-3).
1) Brad Lincoln was called up to the Pirates today and surprisingly Jose Tabata will be joining him.
The Post-Gazette is reporting that Tabata will be the left fielder,with Lastings Milledge moving to right and Garrett Jones at first base.
2) I didn't expect Tabata so soon and some wonder why Pedro Alvarez didn't join the promoted pair.
To me,its simple-the Pirates want Alvarez to wait for two reasons-money and money,but in a good way.
Pittsburgh will,like Washington did last night with Strasburg,wait to be at PNC Park and likely against a weak drawing visitor,which will then give them a far larger crowd than usual,therefore making money....
3) One question that I have is this-When Steve Pearce returns,who will be the odd man out?
Pearce had been playing so well before his injury,but to me,it has to be either Lastings Milledge or Pearce.
Not sure which it will be,although Milledge and his zero homers isn't boosting his case very much,but Tabata wasn't promoted to ride the bench and Jones is a John Russell favorite.
Should be an interesting decision.
4) The gentlemen that were bid adieu to make roster room were Jeff Clement and Jack Taschner.
Clement was assigned to Indianapolis,while Taschner was designated for assignment in a move that was destined to occur from the day he signed the contract with the Pirates.
Clement seems to be one of those dreaded 4A players and I just don't see anything that will break the cycle of Indianapolis dominance and Pittsburgh struggles..
5) Delwyn Young's homer off Strasburg was remarkably similar to his pinch hit shot off San Francisco's excellent closer Brian Wilson over the weekend.
Young (in my opinion) will always do better against fastball pitchers than the soft toss types.
6) Finally,some Strasburg talk.
You have to be impressed,but at the same time,you have keep things in perspective.
Look at the opposition and everything was in place for him to succeed.
Give the Nationals all the credit for that and that how things should be done,just remember quite a few players have had similar starts that wound up short of stardom.
7) Still not in love with his mechanics.
Just something that I cannot quite put my finger on,but I am still not fully comfortable there.
8) I have spoken in the past of how much I enjoy Bob Carpenter's work,but Nationals color analyst Rob Dibble is the worst.
Dibble offers a ridiculous comment seemingly every inning such as this gem "Strasburg showing why he might be better than Walter Johnson"
As in Hall of Famer Walter Johnson?
How this guy keeps his job is beyond me.
9) I noticed while looking at a few posts,that I never worked on a post for the Pirates top 15 prospects.
I will attempt to rectify that over the Minor League All Star break...
Back later with more on either the Suns sale or more On the Signing Front...