Stephen Strasburg - The Next Big Thing (JESSE KURTZ)

By: Jesse Kurtz
By: Jesse Kurtz

I was fortunate to have seen the phenom pitch in person in 2008. He was brilliant then, and even better now.

As an avid baseball fan, I was glued to the television set Tuesday night to watch Stephen Strasburg make his major league debut.  This was the most-hyped moment in sports in recent memory.  The game sold out in a matter of minutes when it was announced this was the game Strasburg would make his first Big-League start. Rarely does something live up to this sort of hype.  But the kid did not disappoint.

Strasburg was electric on the mound striking out 14 batters in seven innings.  As a former high school baseball coach, I sat back in amazement that a "kid" could rise to the occasion like that and dominate professionals (I use that term loosely because it was the Pirates... LOL).  I couldn't help but feel a sense of Deja vu.  I had seen this before... IN PERSON!

May 2, 2008.  I rushed out to the Air Force Academy to see a little-known pitcher from San Diego State named Stephen Strasburg pitch against the Falcons.  That day, Strasburg struck out 11 Air Force batters and allowed just three hits in a complete game, 15-0 victory.  I walked away a believer.  Falcons infielder, K.J. Randhawa told me after the game, "from what I've seen out here today, that's a guy you want to keep track of because he's got a bright future and he can do some great things down the road."

That road has now led to the Major Leagues.  And I feel fortunate to have been a spectator along that road two years ago.    To re-use the wise words of K.J. Randhawa... "Keep track of that guy because he's got a bright future and can do some great things down the road!"

Jesse Kurtz, KKTV Sports Director.

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