BUFFALO, NY - 14,774 fans filled Coca-Cola field on Thursday to watch top pitching prospect Stephen Strasburg.
Strasburg is considered the top pitching prospect in baseball. This is Strasburg's last scheduled start in the minor leagues. He is expected to pitch for the Nationals on June 8th against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The No. 1 pick in last year's draft is 3-1 in five Triple-A starts, with a 1.27 ERA, six walks and 33 strikeouts in 28 1-3 innings.
The Nationals, who gave the two-time All-American from San Diego State a record $15.1 million, four-year contract, said Monday that Strasburg will make his major league debut against Pittsburgh on June 8 at Nationals Park.
Listen to 2 on Your Side's Ed Kilgore and Ben Hayes break down Strasburg's performance in Buffalo.
Watch a video interview to the right with Washington Post reporter Dave Sheinin, who has covered all but one of Strasburg's starts in the minor leagues.
2 on your Side's Ben Hayes was at the game and had a live blog of the action at Coca-Cola field.
1:07: Underway at Coca-Cola Field. Stands are about 75% full, with fans still coming in. Strasburg mania in full effect here in Buffalo.
1:15: Syracuse got one hit in the top of the first but no runs. We head to the bottom of the first and Strasburg is on the mound.
1:18: Strasburg gets Jesus Feliciano to ground out for his first out of the game. Feliciano is the top hitter in the international league batting .386.
1:19: Strasburg gets a 2nd straight ground out. Hitting 98 mph on the radar gun early.
1:21: It's an easy 1-2-3 inning. Strasburg gets Mike Jacobs to strike out looking to end the inning. Had a pitch reach 99 mph early in the at-bat.
1:23: Stadium is really filling up. Great crowd.
1:27: Bisons starter Dillon Gee with a solid start as well. A quick 1-2-3 2nd inning. Now back to Strasburg
1:29: Strasburg starts 2nd inning against Mike Hessman the top slugger in the league with 18 home runs.
1:32: Strasburg a great change-up, 91 mph. Hessman goes down swinging. 2nd strikeout for Strasburg.
1:36: Another 1-2-3 inning for Strasburg. After the Hessman strikeout, Russ Adams popped out, and Mike Cervenak grounded out.
1:39: Strasburg gets his first at-bat of the game, and Gee gets him to strike out looking.
1:45: Pete Orr puts Syracuse on the board. A 2-run home run to give the Chiefs a 2-0 lead in the top of the third.
1:49: Strasburg rolling. Strikes out J.R. House looking to start third inning.
1:52: Strasburg walks Bisons pitcher Dillon Gee to extend the third inning. Quick meeting at the mound to calm down Strasburg who was not happy with a non-strike call earlier in the at-bat.
1:54: The Bisons get a hit. Feliciano singles to left. Two-on, two-out in the bottom of the third.
1:55: Strasburg gets out of trouble. Turner flies out to end the inning.
Through three innings Strasburg is very impressive. The fast ball has been about 96-98 mph consistently. He did get it up to 99 mph for one pitch. He's working in his change-up and curve ball really well to keep the Bisons hitters guessing.
Strasburg is on a pitch count today and is up to 51 pitches so far, which is a little high. He has fallen behind a few hitters. He's expected to throw about 95 pitches. It will be interesting to see how he does as he faces the Bisons lineup for a second time.
2:06: Strasburg gets the first out of the 4th inning, Mike Hessman gets his 2nd at-bat.
2:09: Hessman flies out. Two-out in the 4th
2:11: Strasburg strikes outs Russ Adams looking to end the 4th. His 4th strike out of the day.
2:14: Strasburg does it with the bat a nice single into center. It's his 2nd hit with Syracuse.
2:20: Syracuse adds another run. Strasburg scores on a bases loaded ground ball. It's 3-0 Chiefs.
2:39: Sorry for the delay, went down to shoot some video of the fifth inning.
2:40: Strasburg works out of trouble again in the fifth. He gives up two singles, but gets his fifth strikeout of the game and gets out of a jam to keep Syracuse up 3-0.
2:42: Activity in the Syracuse bullpen. His pitch count is up to 89 pitches. We will see if he comes out for the sixth inning.
From a closer view point I have to say it's really impressive to watch Strasburg pitch. He is still throwing his fast ball 95-98 mph in the 5th inning. It almost seems effortless for him.
2:48: Devin Ivany makes it 5-0 Syracuse with a two-run home run in the 6th inning.
2:49: That's all for Strasburg. His day is done after five scoreless innings.
So here is the final line for Strasburg.
5 innings, Zero runs, 3 hits, 1 walk, and 5 strikeouts.
He threw 89 pitches, 54 for strikes.
It's was another dominant performance for Strasburg. He next stars will be in the major leagues with the Nationals as he faces Pittsburgh on June 8th.