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Wednesday, July 2, 2008


What did you think?
Chris, damn him, makes good points in his comments on yesterday's post so I'm trying to temper my enthusiasm. I so badly want to find that pitching stud, The One, the Zimmerman of the mound, that I will get way too excited too easily (and it would be funny in a way if the Zimmerman of the mound turned out to be Zimmermann).
Glad they let him work the fifth. Sutton made a good point - the team isn't going to win the pennant. Let's see what he can do with some trouble.
So there will be no declaration of The One just yet. I will rate it as a very positive first outing.
Ronnie Belliard, by the way, is my son's new favorite player, non-Braves division.

Unrelated, I found this link that predicts the day of your demise and I have 21 years left. Will I see a pennant? The pessimistic choice on the death watch has me checking out this Christmas, which would deny me that chance.


Chris Needham said...

Nothing to complain about after that start.

After seeing his stuff, it shows you how silly those pronouncements and expectations about mediocrities like Chico and Mock are, huh?

MikeHarris said...

Yeah, I'd take him in mini-draft over those two without having to think about it. His stuff moves.

Chris Needham said...

That's not fair. I saw a bunch of Chico's pitches move at least 450'.

Softball Girl said...

You and Chris are far more knowledgeable on this than me, but it looks like Ballestar really succeeded with his fastball. Is a 95 mph+ pitch enough to keep him up here? I hope so. But I'll be curious to see how he fares once our division has faced him a couplathree times and can craft a decent scouting report on him.

But if he does stick I already have his nickname (especially if he can get out of jams like he did in the 5th): Battlestar.

MikeHarris said...

A. Chris is a lot more knowledgable. I wing it a lot.

B. That's a valid point on the fastball and scouting reports and all that but it looks like he has a decent change and curve to mix with it. You can't just bring the heat but I love the heat he does bring.

C. They won't let Lenny near this kid, will they? That one is for Gus.

Nationals Fan said...

He touched 95 but more of his fastballs were in the low 90s.

You can succeed just fine with that velocity if you can spot it, which he did well enough in innings 1-4, but not in the 5th. At 6'5", you have to wonder about command.

And the curve and change were not pitches he had control of for the most part. He'll need to be able to get strikes with those pitches to make it through major league lineups the second and third time.

All in all, I'm happy with him and thanking my lucky stars JimBo didn't trade him for Sean Casey.

MikeHarris said...


Anonymous said...

A couple of the change ups and breaking pitches were quite sharp so it wasn't just the FB. I mean he is 22. I think it can only get better now that he is in the hands of St. Claire as long as getting shelled a few times or never getting any run support don't break his brain.

Nationals Fan said...

Ha-ha. I like you Mike. I think you're my kind of Nationals fan. I get called a Hater a lot, but fans who aren't in a love-hate relationship at this point I'm not sure really care very much.

Nationals Fan said...

@anon--you're right, there were some very good breaking pitches. Twice he got first pitch strikes with curveballs. The one to Hanley was a great pitch in a rough situation. If he can pitch backwards like that it'll make a big difference. If he can't, and he keeps throwing almost 80% FBs, he's going to struggle.

MikeHarris said...

The hating is part of the loving and to hell with people who can't understand that.
Trust me, when the times comes, they'll see plenty of love out of me.

Gus said...

Thanks for the shout out. Maybe we should never let him touch a bat and keep Lenny away from him. Maybe the poor coaching will rub off onto his pitching, so just give up the out. Let him stand about 10 metres off to the left, leaning on his bat.

George Templeton said...

You will see a playoff team before the next presidential election (2012), a pennant . . .????

MikeHarris said...

I've always loved your optimism, George, even when you are full of it!