ALTOONA, PA - APRIL 11: Stephen Strasburg #37 of the Harrisburg Senators talks with members of the media during a press conference following their win against the Altoona Curve in his minor league debut on April 11, 2010 at Blair County Ballpark in Altoona, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Perhaps MLB Network analyst Mitch Williams said it best Wednesday night after watching highlights of Stephen Strasburg no-hit the Norfolk Tides in six innings of work in his second start at the Triple-A level:
"There is no Four-A," Williams said.
In other words, "Jesus" is ready for the majors.
Last night Strasburg struck out seven and walked one while throwing 79 pitches. His dominance at the minor-league level is best demonstrated through his stats. He's given up just one hit in two Triple-A starts. And his minor league numbers look like this: 34 innings pitched, four earned runs, 14 hits, eight walks and 40 strikeouts. That adds up to a 1.06 ERA and a 0.65 WHIP.
After his jaw-dropping performance Wednesday, Strasburg told reporters that he's "still not where I want to be."
One reporter asked what that meant. Curveball needs to be sharper? Fastball needs a couple extra miles per hour?
Nah, Strasburg's thinking is more simplistic:
"I don't want to be in Triple-A the rest of my career, you know?"
Nats fans couldn't agree more.
But when will he arrive? When can fans see the Pitcher Who Saved D.C.?
Speculation now is that June 4 would be the date of Strasburg's first start in the majors. (Jesus starts, Storen saves?) That's a home game against the Cincinnati Reds. That could be followed up with another start against the Pirates on June 10 to end the homestand.
Nats fans, you have been warned. Buy your tickets now and get your popcorn ready. It's gonna be a fun ride...