How do you respond?

I’m finding it tough to read about Stephen Strasburg‘s recent elbow injury. I find it tough to…

[1] …accept the messianic tone used by so many writers, commentators, and fans when they talk about this kid (e.g., “Strasburg’s Reality Almost Unreal” and “Thrill on the Hill: Strasburg Wows”).

[2] …feel sorry for this kid, even though I want to and can sympathize with the trauma of being injured and having to go through surgery and rehabilitation.

[3] …justify spilling so much ink on this kid, before he joined the Nationals and since, when, despite his 100-mph fastball (or his “terror-inducing curveball”), he’s just another guy who plays baseball.

[4] …and I could go on…

“Baseball’s Arm of the Future, Headed for Surgery”

The most sane and sober account of Stephen Strasburg that I’ve read (and you can hear) since yesterday’s barrage of articles about his injury comes from NPR’s Scott Simon, “Stephen Strasburg, Meet Tommy John.” Am I missing something? Is this kid really so important? Maybe my unease with the coverage of Strasburg is just a product of some untimely catching up on the news?

2 thoughts on “How do you respond?

  1. wildbillyscircusstory

    Maybe I’m too close to this situation having been through it twice with Messrs. Wood and Prior, but come on man. The kid is easily the most anticipated rookie pitcher since those guys and he did not disappoint. He energized a moribund franchise single handedly and the best critics — MLB hitters — were racing for the thesarus to find new words to describe his stuff.

    If this guy pitched for Boston, all of New England would be self-flagellating for their percieved baseball sins while loggers in the northwest would be felling trees at an alarming rate to accommodate the literary community’s need to write yet another book about how the curse lives on. Bottom line, I like the kid and thought he was great for baseball. In the grand scheme of the world, this is a bad break. In the world of baseball, it is a tragedy. Especially if your a Nats fan.

    1. peashoot Post author

      Okay, I guess since writing this post I have felt some sympathy for the kid. Tough break. But that’s all. In my mind, baseball didn’t improve when Strasburg entered the league and it hasn’t lessened in quality since he left the mound. And c’mon, “World of Baseball”?! Therein lies the problem. The rhetoric surrounding this kid is not just hyperbolic, no doubt because it’s the product of a myopic world(of baseball)view, but it ought to be offensive to anyone willing to problematize the narratives spewed by the media and, I guess in this case, sports fans. It really does stink for Strasburg that he injured his elbow but this injury shouldn’t inspire people to wax theological, in my humble opinion.


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