Stephen Strasburg takes the hill tonight against nationally ranked TCU. Here’s what he’s up against:
- Matt Curry (’09) – relatively slow start shouldn’t obscure the fact that the junior college transfer has a big lefty bat that will play; compared to current Phillie Matt Stairs (aka Jon Broxton kryptonite)
- Matt Carpenter (’09) – better college player than prospect, but can’t argue with his production so far (.371/.525/.600 with a 23/11 walk to strikeout ratio); if he can stick at third in the long-term, could get a look as a mid-round senior sign
- Matt Vern (’09) – another player who profiles better as a very good college bat rather than a legit pro prospect, but still capable of hitting the ball a long way when he gets a piece (team leading 6 HRs); Vern’s defensive limitations could keep him from being drafted altogether, but he’s no less of a threat to take Strasburg deep because of it
TCU has a senior-heavy lineup, but no singular hitter that can realistically be expected to do much damage against San Diego State’s ace. My totally baseless prediction for Strasburg’s final line:
7 IP 4 H 1 ER 1 BB 14 K
In addition, I’ll predict a cumulative 2-8 night (including a double, a walk, and five strikeouts) for the three players named Matt listed above.
I’m most curious to see how Curry does against Strasburg. One game is too small a sample to base anything important on, but, as a lefty bat with a powerful, all-or-nothing style swing, he actually matches up pretty well. Curry’s future as a pro could be as a pinch-hitter capable of hitting the ball out every time up, so his at bats against Strasburg correlate pretty well with the kinds of matchups he may see coming off the bench to face fireballing relief aces.
Anyway, any other guesses about how Strasburg will perform on Friday night?