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Stephen Strasburg dominant in first MLB start back from Tommy John surgery

Sep 6, 2011, 9:17 PM EDT

Los Angeles Dodgers v Washington Nationals Getty Images

Stephen Strasburg just completed his first MLB start since undergoing Tommy John surgery last September. And it was fantastic.

Strasburg held the Dodgers to just two hits over five scoreless innings. He threw 40 out of 56 pitches for strikes while striking out four and walking none.

According to Brooks Baseball, Strasburg averaged 96.68 mph on his fastball and topped out at 98.7 mph while his changeup and curveball were just as nasty as they were before the surgery. The Nationals gave up three runs in the top of the sixth inning to erase a 3-0 lead, so Strasburg will be handed a no-decision. It would have been nice to see him get the victory, but the important part is that he walked away healthy.

Each of Strasburg’s first 13 major league starts have been an event. I suppose we’ll eventually get to the point where a Strasburg start will feel like a Justin Verlander start or a Tim Lincecum start, but hopefully he’ll continue to be appointment viewing for a long time. Nice to have him back.

  1. paul621 - Sep 6, 2011 at 9:27 PM

    I, for one, welcome our new Stephen Strasburg overlord.

  2. sasquash20 - Sep 6, 2011 at 9:56 PM

    As a Phillies fan all I can say is who cares. I’ll worry about Strasburg enough over the next decade. Right now I just want to enjoy my dominating Phillies. I’m real and realize that this current Phillies team only has a few more seasons together (if healthy). So I can’t worry about one of the many young talented players in the NL east making his come back. The Mets, Nats, Marlins, and Braves all have a lot of young talent. So Phillies fans enjoy maybe the best team in Phillies history. Oh and Clifford Lee rules. See you all in DOCtober!

    • jdd428 - Sep 6, 2011 at 10:07 PM

      Oh how I would love a Brewers-Diamondbacks NLCS – that’s what I think of your Doc-tober. BTW, Clifford was 0-2 with a 6.94 in the WS last season. Good luck with that.

      • gmc173 - Sep 6, 2011 at 10:57 PM

        And he was 2-0 with a 2.81 ERA the year before… whats your point JDD?

    • phillyphreak - Sep 6, 2011 at 10:14 PM

      While I like your Phillies optimism, as a fellow Phils fan, I need to ask the general populous why every thread has to become Phillies central?

      I love that Strasburg is back. It’s good for baseball and I like baseball. Therefore it is good for me.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Sep 6, 2011 at 10:25 PM

      Seriously man?? I am often guilty of hijacking threads with Phillies talk, but this is too much even for me. Also, as a baseball fan you should care about other teams and players.

    • ThisIsBaseball - Sep 6, 2011 at 10:34 PM

      PS. his name is Clifton, not Clifford. Get your players’ names right if you want to brag about them.

      • sasquash20 - Sep 7, 2011 at 1:45 AM

        Sorry douche bag.

  3. kcfanatic - Sep 6, 2011 at 10:05 PM

    I’m a fan of the kid, but not his team. Good for him. I’m glad he’s makingit back.

  4. mojosmagic - Sep 6, 2011 at 11:25 PM

    As a Phils fan I want to say he was awesome tonight. Good luck!

  5. joshftw - Sep 6, 2011 at 11:51 PM

    It was good to see him back!

    He looked more like just a really good flyball pitcher tonight rather than the fission-powered K machine we saw last year though.

    Then again, considering how last year ended for him…

    Baby steps I guess.

  6. natstowngreg - Sep 7, 2011 at 1:12 AM

    Just returned from the game, which (including a short rain delay) lasted about 4 hours. Soaking wet. At least the heavy rain, for the most part, did not pass over the ballpark during the game..

    Strasburg was a couple of MPH below his pre-surgery fastball, but considering the status of his recovery, not bad at all. He threw only 56 pitches in 5 innings — 40 strikes. The 2 hits were not hit hard: Dee Gordon looped a ball to right-center and hustled it into a double; Juan Rivera got a gift single on a ball Ian Desomond should have caught. Unfortunately, the bullpen blew the 3-0 lead.

    • natstowngreg - Sep 7, 2011 at 1:16 AM

      Desmond. We want edit function! We want edit function!

    • shawndc04 - Sep 7, 2011 at 9:31 AM

      He’s dialing back intentionally on the fastball. He doesn’t need to throw 98-100, and cutinng back aa bit gives him better control.

      • Kevin S. - Sep 7, 2011 at 11:14 AM

        The pitch he struck out Miles on was 99 – I know, I know, stadium gun. Still.

        Greg, where were you sitting last night? We were in the BB row of the lower deck square with third base – fantastic view. Unfortunately my phone died so I couldn’t take any pics.

    • madhatternalice - Sep 7, 2011 at 1:47 PM

      Stras has been on record as saying that he wanted to lower his strikeouts by inducing more ground balls so he could go deeper into games. I too was at the game last night (section 133), and despite an almost steady diet of fastballs for the first three innings, the Dodgers looked clueless. Good to see him back on a mound!

  7. farvefromover - Sep 7, 2011 at 7:52 AM

    Sasquash20 smells like John Kruk’s dong and Lenny Dykstra’s ass

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