The Anti-Strasburg

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While the baseball media and baseball fans were converting into Strasburgians, a quieter event, but of far more significance(at least in my view), was happening in Cleveland. This is a city whose reputation is equal to the mismatched hype of Tim Wakefield to Stephen Strasburg.

The numbers are in for the young phenom. 14 strikeouts, and everything else, against the lowly Pirates.If you have seen MLB.com today, you might think he threw a perfect game last night. But even Roy Halladay didn’t receive such royal treatment as the page reporting on the debut. Did the Beatles just arrive in America?

Rather than royalty, let’s talk loyalty. Opposite the young prince, is another kind of pitcher, the kind with longevity and 2777 innings pitched for one team. Through persistence, talent, ingenuity and, in addition, poise and grace, Tim Wakefield is our innings King. Is there a better time to mention Tim Wakefield in the same sentence as Roger Clemens? In post-game interviews, all Wakefield did was praise his teammates, completely free of ego.

On my desk is a copy of Baseball America, with Bryce Harper on the cover, the other number 1 phenom now wearing a W hat.”Beyond the Hype” reads the subtitle. This leads me to the list MLB has provided of the most strikeouts in a Major League Debut. Look it over and tell me how many of those pitchers did for one team what Tim Wakefield has done for the Red Sox.  (There are two Red Sox pitchers in that line-up) Talk to me about Stephen Strasburg in 2023.I don’t mean to sound cynical here. As Tito said, ‘it’s good for baseball.” and what’s good for baseball is good for me. I just hope we recover from the hangover following the party.

 

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