As expected, the Washington Nationals selected San Diego State pitcher Stephen Strasburg with the first overall pick in last night's first round of the baseball draft. As soon as the pick was made, all the so called "experts" began to chime in on when and if Strasburg will sign, how much money will the contract be worth and when Strasburg will make his Major League debut. I could post links to dozen of articles and columns on those questions, but I'm already sick of hearing the speculation. My breaking point came this morning when I heard Steve Phillips predict on ESPN radio the Nationals will not come to terms with Strasburg and that Strasburg will sit out a year and then re-enter the draft next year. With all that said, I did find this Monday pre-draft piece from the Nationals' website on Ben McDonald, which included his thoughts on Strasburg, very interesting. Many of you will remember back 20 years ago when Big Ben was selected by the Baltimore Orioles in the first round of the draft. Many thought he would be the cornerstone of the Orioles starting rotation for years to come. Unfortunately for both McDonald and the Orioles, things didn't work out that way.
Meanwhile up I-95 a piece, Raul Ibanez had this to say in The Philadelphia Inquirer about accusations by bloggers that he is using performance enhancing drugs:
You can have my urine, my hair, my blood, my stool - anything you can test," Ibanez said. "I'll give you back every dime I've ever made" if the test is positive.
"I'll put that up against the jobs of anyone who writes this stuff," he said. "Make them accountable. There should be more credibility than some 42-year-old blogger typing in his mother's basement. It demeans everything you've done with one stroke of the pen.
I haven't accused Ibanez of using PEDs, I don't live in my mom's basement and I'm not 42 (yet), so I guess I'm in the clear when it comes to Ibanez's wrath. Of course, he is batting something like .500 against the Nationals this year and has something like 85 HRs against them in 2009. Hmmm....maybe that's the reason for his improved stats at age 37...he's playing the Nationals 18 times a year????? You can read the entire Philadelphia Inquirer article here.