White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen heaped some heavy praise on Stephen Strasburg after the rookie sensation struck out 10 over seven innings of one-run ball on Friday night (via Elliott Smith of the Daily Herald).
“When you’ve got that kind of arm and you throw pitches for strikes,
obviously you’re going to be a top pitcher no matter what,” Guillen
said. “I think he’s maybe the best pitcher in the NL. Much respect,
because (Roy) Halladay is out there. I’ve never seen the kid from San
Francisco (Tim Lincecum) throw, (Johan) Santana’s out there, but this
kid is legit.”
Hey Ozzie, that Ubaldo Jimenez guy isn’t too bad, either. Still, it’s hard to blame him for getting caught up in the hysteria.
Strasburg has fanned 32 of the 72 batters (44 percent) he has faced in the major leagues and with that, he is already tied for third on the team in strikeouts. Seriously. For the sabermetric set, Strasburg has an xFIP (Expected Fielding Independent Pitching) of 1.44. As Larry David would say, that’s “pretty, pretty, pretty good.”
Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen gave up three runs in the top of the ninth inning during Sunday’s game against the Braves, blowing his first save since August 26 last season. He had converted 34 consecutive saves.
Jansen yielded back-to-back singles to lead off the ninth inning, staked to a 4-1 lead. After getting two outs, Matt Adams hit a three-run home run down the right field line to knot the game at four apiece.
After Sunday’s lackluster performance, Jansen is now 24-for-25 in save chances this season with a 1.49 ERA and a 62/2 K/BB ratio in 42 1/3 innings.
Orioles closer Zach Britton finished Sunday’s 9-7 victory over the Astros with a scoreless ninth inning, earning his sixth save of the season. He has now earned the save in 55 consecutive opportunities dating back to September 2015, setting a new American League record. Tom Gordon previously held the record with 54 consecutive saves. Eric Gagne holds the major league record at 84.
Britton’s last blown save came on September 20, 2015, then converted two more saves before the end of the regular season. He went 47-for-47 in save chances last season and is six-for-six so far this year.
Along with his six saves, Britton has a 2.65 ERA and a 13/8 K/BB ratio in 17 innings this season. The lefty came off the disabled list earlier this month after missing two months with a strained left forearm.