Thursday, March 11, 2010

All four of Strasburg's pitches

So, I was like a lot of Nats fans in that I was interested in seeing Strasburg's debut against some real Major League bats (Ordonez and Cabrera, specifically) on Tuesday. I admit, I haven't hyped up Strasburg too much in the past, and I haven't got my hopes up. I saw him in the College World Series first regional game for SDSU, and he kinda stunk up the joint. He threw a game in the Arizona Fall League where he gave up 8 runs and three home runs in 2 2/3 IP. I saw all these folks falling all over themselves to proclaim SS as the greatest pitching prospect in history, and I didn't buy it. Why? I dunno, maybe it's because we're talking about the fucking Nats here, and anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.
So, all that said, I still skipped out of work for two hours on Tuesday to head home and watch the game. The rest of this post is heavy with animated gifs, so I'm gonna hide them from the main post. (Seriously, the loading of the rest of the post may be as slow and deliberate as Ron Villone. You have been warned!) If you wanna see all four of Strasburg's pitches, in really really crappy animated gifs (and many times over), click the read more link. Do not click if you're on dial up. Seriously. It won't load until, like, 2025. It's just like choosing to take the red pill or the blue pill. Only nothing like that at all, really.

(I got the speeds of the pitches from various places, but it goes without saying that I took the majority from Ben Goessling, Adam Kilgore, Mark Zuckerman, and Bill Ladson. These guys should be regular reads for everyone, of course. It also goes without saying that I'm probably violating MLB's dissemination rule about a bazillion times here. This is my big middle finger to Bud Selig for all those horrible... horrible suits he wears.)

First up is what SS threw entirely in the first inning, his two seam fastball. This pitch sat at 95-97 mph.

He didn't throw anything else besides that, mostly because he didn't need to.

He came out in the second inning and was facing Miguel Cabrera. He threw two two-seam fastballs, then followed those up with the first slurves of the game. They were coming in around 81 mph.The first one just buckled Miggy's legs like the bartender had just made last call. (C'mon, you know I can't be serious for more than... like... two paragraphs, people.)

Here is that pitch again, only in slow motion (cause I just fucking love chewing up bandwith).

That truly was a thing of beauty. He threw one more slurve that was inside a tad to make it 2-2. I channeled my inner Major League and said, "Forget about the curve ball, Strassy, Give 'em the heater!" So, what does he do? He throws his four seam fastball at 98, and Miggy just waves at it.

Once more, in slo-mo, so we call all laugh at Cabrera's inadequacies.

He reminded me of Jordan Zimmermann a bit there (who I miss dearly, by the way. I certainly do have a huge man crush on that mid-western bastard).

Stras then broke out his change up (if you can call it that, as it sits around 91 mph). Here is the first he threw in the game to [insert the guy's name here], both fouled off. The change up drops like most folks. I'm gonna throw it up, first in real time, then slowed down.

So there you have it. His four pitches, in crappy ass small animated gifs that slowed your computer down to the point you were cursing my unborn child. In case that didn't piss you off enough, I've got one more. He fell behind 3-0 to [insert dude's name here] with two on and two out. He battled back with two two-seamers to bring the count full, then just froze dude with a slurve to end the inning.

And here's MASN's slow mo of that called third strike from a slightly different angle. Props to the fan in the second row helping blue out.

Alright. I'm done breaking your internet. Discuss amongst yourselves how much MLB will sue me for in the comments.


Puttzy said...

I'm fairly certain that the guy in the second row is Matt Capps. That kind of careless exuberance can only be shown by a few "special" people.

Section 138 said...

I'm still sitting on a Matt Capps mash-up with a famous internet musician. I can be persuaded to post it for... $35.

Sec 204 Row H Seat 7 said...

So what is your view on Strasburg now?

Section 138 said...

My view? Pretty poor since he's 900 miles away. (Hey-Oh!! Ugh. Seriously, just ugh. I'm so sorry for that.)
I'm still trying no to get my hopes up too much, but his breaking ball really, really impressed me. I'm not sure guys will be able to sit on that pitch either, since his four seamer runs up to 100 mph. Hopefully Ivan can mentor him a little in pitch selection this year, and he'll learn how to use his pitches well.
Also, his ears are expanding by the day. If we don;t call him "Radar", we might have to go with "Dumbo."