Strasburg Exceeds Hype With 14Ks

It might be the greatest debut of all time
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 9, 2010 5:44 AM CDT

(Newser) – Drew Storen said it best: “He’s the only guy in baseball who lives up to all the stories you hear.” And, oh the stories they told. Stephen Strasburg made his major league debut touted as the greatest pitching prospect of all time—a “folk hero with a forkball,” writes Mike Wise of the Washington Post. Yet somehow he actually exceeded all that hype, striking out 14—two less than the Nationals’ scoreboard could hold. “I had no idea it only went to 12 strikeouts,” said the team’s president. “It never occurred to me that we needed more.”

It was the greatest debut of all time, says Jayson Stark of ESPN. Yes, two other rookies have managed 15 punchouts in their maiden outings, but that was in the days before pitch counts, and both went nine innings. Strasburg, on a 94-pitch leash, crammed those Ks into seven. Heck, forget debuts; only five other pitchers have ever managed 14 strikeouts and no walks. That's pretty memorable, unless you're Stephen Strasburg. “It’s kind of like getting married,” he told the AP. “You go into it wanting to remember everything, and once it's done, you can't remember a single thing.”

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