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  1. Your pitching star of the night: Jeff Niemann

    Jun 9, 2010, 8:45 AM EDT

    So enough about Strasburg. Nice and all, but he didn’t have the best pitching performance last night. The Rays’ Jeff Neimann did.  Niemann allowed just two hits in a shutout of the Blue Jays, who sport a slightly better offense than the Pirates. Indeed, there were a number of fabulous pitching performances last night by…

  2. So, what are we to make of this Strasburg kid?

    Jun 9, 2010, 8:20 AM EDT

    Drew had the live blog and the recap last night, perfectly capturing the “I can’t believe what I’m seeing” aspect of all of this. And it was spectacular. I’m still not sure I believed what I just saw. The Superman exists, and he’s a National. Due to the injustice that is Major League Baseball’s blackout…

  3. And That Happened: Tuesday's Scores and Highlights

    Jun 9, 2010, 5:39 AM EDT

    Nationals 5, Pirates 2: A star is born. Giants 3, Reds 0: Not to be a killjoy or anything, but Matt Cain’s game score (76) was one better than Strasburg’s (75). Cain was dancin’ with the Devil, though, recording 16 fly ball outs in a park where you don’t want to be giving up a…

  4. Mike Stanton quietly goes 3-for-5 in MLB debut

    Jun 8, 2010, 10:34 PM EDT

    As Craig pointed out earlier, another young “phenom” made his major league debut on Tuesday night: Marlins outfielder Mike Stanton. The 20-year-old went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and almost helped the Marlins top the Phillies with a bases-loading infield single in the top of the ninth inning.  Ronny Paulino spoiled that fun when he…

  5. Strasburg wins MLB debut in lights-out fashion

    Jun 8, 2010, 9:48 PM EDT

    We’ve been lucky enough to witness a multitude of impressive pitching performances this season.  Ubaldo Jimenez fired a no-hitter in early April and currently sits 11-1 on the year with a 0.93 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP.  Those are historically good numbers.  Dallas Braden threw a perfect game on May 9 against the Rays, who…

  6. In which Strasburg debuts and we blog about it…

    Jun 8, 2010, 8:53 PM EDT

    As HardballTalk readers and baseball fans in general, you’re all well aware of the story by now.  Selected No. 1 overall by the Nationals in last year’s first-year player draft, Stephen Strasburg has cruised through the minor league ranks with spectacular numbers at every stop.  In five starts this season at Double-A Harrisburg, he posted…

  7. Pre-Strasmas buzzkill: Nats prospect Jack McGeary set for surgery

    Jun 8, 2010, 6:28 PM EDT

    The Nationals announced Tuesday that 21-year-old left-hander Jack McGeary would undergo Tommy John surgery and miss the rest of 2010. McGeary was a sixth-round pick in 2007, but he was viewed as a first-round talent and he received a $1.85 million bonus as part of an unusual contract that allowed him to attend Stanford and…

  8. Brian Roberts, Mike Gonzalez not close to rejoining Orioles

    Jun 8, 2010, 6:15 PM EDT

    New Orioles manager Juan Samuel delivered some more bad news Tuesday when he made it clear that neither Brian Roberts nor Mike Gonzalez were ready to help the team with the game’s worst record. Roberts appeared on pace for a mid-June return before contracting pneumonia last month. That setback, though, may prove mild to the…

  9. The Pirates should not go down without a fight

    Jun 8, 2010, 5:45 PM EDT

    This post over at the Pirates’ blog WHYGAVS is being rewtweed and reposted all over the Internet today because of a brilliant “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” riff on the whole Stephen Strasburg debut. And it is brilliant, so go check it out.  But I like it much more for this passage from its author,…

  10. Jason Heyward may get an All-Star Game start

    Jun 8, 2010, 5:17 PM EDT

    In the last week Jason Heyward’s OPS has dipped about .100 points as he has become mired in a 3 for 32 slump.  In that same week he has surged into second place in the All-Star vote totals among NL outfielders and is within striking distance of current leader Ryan Braun. Given the ascension of…

  11. The Indians designate Mark Grudzielanek for assignment

    Jun 8, 2010, 4:47 PM EDT

    Tough week for aging infielders, no? First Adam Kennedy Everett was DFA’d by the Tigers and now Mark Grudzielanek* gets the same treatment. Grudzielanek was batting .273/.328/.273 with 11 RBI in 110 at-bats with the Indians this season. He hurt his hammy on Sunday, however, and since the Indians were given special permission by the…

  12. Come by HBT tonight as we celebrate Strasmas

    Jun 8, 2010, 4:20 PM EDT

    Ok, I really should stop calling it Strasmas.  For one thing, it’s been beaten to death by now. For another thing, Gleeman is Jewish so it would only be fair for us to make a couple of Strasukkah references. For that matter I’m pretty sure Pouliot celebrates Strasivus, so maybe the whole holiday meme should…

  13. UPDATE: The Mets are off the hook with the Oliver Perez DL assignment

    Jun 8, 2010, 4:03 PM EDT

    UPDATE:  Guess not. Andy Martino reports that Major League Baseball is “comfortable” with the Ollie Perez DL stint and has closed its investigation.  Apparently Perez suffered the most conveniently-timed knee injury in baseball history. I’m inclined to think that teams abuse the DL for roster management purposes all the time. As far as I know,…

  14. Quote of the Day: Cubs' first rounder 'shocked'

    Jun 8, 2010, 3:46 PM EDT

    Southern Arkansas pitcher Hayden Simpson, on the Cubs taking him last night with the 16th overall pick: It came as a complete shock. We were hearing second to fifth round. I don’t see any problem with me signing. No, when you’re a Division II player expecting to go in, say, the fourth round and the…

  15. Should we care about Pete Rose's corked bat?

    Jun 8, 2010, 3:13 PM EDT

    Many of you have responded in the Pete Rose thread that a corked bat probably wasn’t a big deal because, as the good fellows at MythBusters (and many other researchers) have demonstrated, a corked bat doesn’t help a batter hit the ball any harder or farther or anything, and actually has some counterproductive qualities. I’ll…

  16. Draft's early rounds filled with some great names

    Jun 8, 2010, 2:47 PM EDT

    Often in sports there’s talk of “big-name players,” but this post isn’t quite about that (or really about much of anything, as you’ll soon see). Maybe it’s just me getting old and thinking ahead to all the botched pronunciations in my future, but I’ve been amazed by the number of “interesting” names being drafted so…

  17. Three year-old girl injured during batting practice at Dodger Stadium

    Jun 8, 2010, 2:32 PM EDT

    A three year-old girl’s skull was fractured after being hit by a line drive during batting practice at Dodger Stadium yesterday. The injuries, thankfully, are not considered life-threatening. The ball came of Russell Martin’s bat on what was, according to the article, a line drive down the left field line. It’s unclear whether the ball…

  18. Strasburg isn't the only one debuting tonight

    Jun 8, 2010, 2:16 PM EDT

    As everyone fixates on Stephen Strasburg, let us not forget that there’s another young phenom making his debut today. His name is Mike Stanton, he plays for the Marlins and he has simply abused Double-A hitting so far this year. How badly has he abused it? To the tune of .311/.411/.726 with 21 home runs…

  19. Dodgers drafting LSU-bound quarterback Zach Lee raises eyebrows

    Jun 8, 2010, 1:47 PM EDT

    The Dodgers selecting Texas high school right-hander Zach Lee with the 28th overall pick last night raised some eyebrows because he was considered one of the draft’s most “unsignable” prospects and they’re rumored to be cutting corners in the wake of owner Frank McCourt’s divorce. ESPN ranks Lee as the country’s ninth-best prep quarterback and…

  20. Chone Figgins not happy about move to bottom of Mariners' lineup

    Jun 8, 2010, 12:54 PM EDT

    Chone Figgins hit second in the Mariners’ batting order for the first 55 games of the season, but manager Don Wakamatsu moved him to the ninth spot yesterday and Figgins wasn’t very happy about it: I mean, I’ve been getting on base. I’ve been swinging the bat pretty good. Obviously, it had something to do…

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