Typically Major League Baseball doesn’t mean a thing until the fireworks are lit on July 4th and again at the All-Star game. I discussed in the previous blog entry that this season has been anything but normal. The 2010 MLB first year player draft is wrapping up, and the #1 pick on the 2009 draft Steven Strasburg, just made his Major League debut with the Washington Nationals. In his debut Strasburg threw 7 complete innings with 14 strikeouts and a bagel in the walk column. In the 7th inning Strasburg was clocked throwing his fastball at 99MPH and his breaking ball at 81MPH. That’s practically un-hittable. Please look past the fact that he accomplished this against the Pittsburgh Pirates. He allowed 4 hits and 2 earned runs and most importantly walked away with the win, a face full of shaving cream, and keys to the white house!!
I was fortunate enough to watch his post game interview on MLB TV and this kid demands a presence around him. He had the journalists basically eating out of his hands in the media room. It wasn't all roses in the media room, the way he drank his post game beverage was his unofficial 15th strikeout. While answering questions he was sipping on a green Gatorade. I don’t have a problem with the color or with Gatorade, but he missed an endorsement opportunity that would have resulted in millions for Strasburg, but he hid the Gatorade logo from everyone, and to make matters worse he sat the bottle on the ground instead of on the table. Gatorade just dropped Tiger Woods, and Strasburg has the potential to be the Tiger Woods of the baseball world.
Strasburg made it to the show which is a great accomplishment. But throwing a 99MPH fastball and a 81MPH breaking ball will only take you to Cooperstown, NY. He needs to look at building his personal brand image and that means endorsement opportunities. Get the money while you can!! The last thing I want is for Strasburg to turn out to be the next Kerry Wood who was a wasted draft pick in my opinion. He needs to build his personal brand, and take the money while people are throwing it him. Once the #1 pick in this years draft, Bryce Harper makes his debut, Strasburg will become a side show pitching next to the freak-show that is Harper's bat. Pitching is awesome and wins you championships, but lets face it, chick’s still dig the long ball!!
The Washington Nationals have something special with the 2009 AND 2010 #1 draft picks, but they need to monitor Strasburg’s progress and limit his innings over the next couple years, or at least until they can develop Harper and get him ready for his debut. I want to see Strasburg, Harper and Obama meet in the oval office and figure out how to save the Gulf. All three own the city, and since it's our Nation's capitol they own the country. If the three of them can't solve the problem who will? BP? Child Please. The rate at which the oil is spilling into the gulf, I boldly predict that the Nationals will win a world series before we completely clean up the Gulf. At this rate, they'll win one before we even plug the hole...