Washington Nationals phenom
Strasburg seems to be dealing with the natural stress and fatigue of learning how to pitch in a five-man professional rotation, rather than having the extra recovery time and shorter season that comes with college ball. It's the pitching equivalent of the wall hit by NBA rookies when they make the jump from a shorter college season. But is there more to it?
White Sox pitching coach
Cooper called it "an upside-down arm action." One major league pitching coach years ago told me about the exact same concern about
"He does something with his arm action that is difficult, in my mind, to pitch a lot of innings on," Cooper said about Strasburg.
(Side note: was
If I were the Nationals, I would be concerned (though, really, there's not much they can do; a delivery can be tweaked, but not the basic way the body moves to throw a baseball). Why? Because nobody in major league baseball knows more about pitching durability than Cooper. The White Sox coach may not get the publicity of the Cardinals'
Take a look at this list: it's the number of 200-inning seasons by pitchers for each club since 2003, Cooper's first full season with the White Sox.
1. Chicago White Sox, 21
That is impressive. The White Sox are 50 percent better than the second-best team in baseball when it comes to durable pitchers.
And now the flip side: the worst teams in baseball over the previous seven seasons when it comes to 200-inning pitchers:
30. Baltimore Orioles, 4
That said, would Cooper have taken Strasburg if given the chance. Of course he would have, but he would have done so fully aware that there would be a high likelihood of breaking down because of the upside-down arm action.
• Thanks to a new ballpark and its revenues, it sure is a new era in Minnesota. Who could have thought the Twins would dump a top prospect, catcher
• Texas, already playoff-bound, made one of those punch-list July moves in getting
The Rangers are crazy if they even think about Cantu at second base while
• Nice move by the Padres to get
And besides, commissioner
Instead of worrying about blood tests for human growth hormone, the commissioner ought to be focused on ridding the game of these fake pies. If players are going to throw pies, they shouldn't have to cheat. Think about the example being set for children and culinary school students. Only the real things should be allowed: real gobs of cherries, apples or blueberries waiting to splatter out from between layers of home-baked crust.
So step up to the pie tin, Mr. Commissioner. You don't need to bargain with the union on this one. It's time to ban the faux pas that is the faux pie.