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Washington Nationals select San Diego State righthander Stephen Strasburg06/09/2009 6:31 PM ET
MLB Press Release
The Washington Nationals today selected San Diego State University right-handed pitcher Stephen Strasburg with the first overall selection in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft. Nationals Assistant General Manager and Vice President of Baseball Operations Mike Rizzo and Nationals Scouting Director Dana Brown made the joint announcement.
Strasburg-who stands 6-foot-4, 220 lbs and hails from San Diego-went 13-1 with a 1.32 ERA (16 ER/109.0 IP) in 15 starts as a junior for the Aztecs. Known for a strong blend of velocity and control, Strasburg fanned an NCAA-best 195 in 109.0 innings as a junior, or 16.1 strikeouts per 9.0 innings (tops in NCAA), en route to a 10.3/1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Strasburg did not issue more than two walks in any game this season, and walked one or fewer batter in 10 of 15 starting assignments.
"We are thrilled to select someone with the special talents that Stephen possesses," said Rizzo. "Those talents have long been on our radar, and Stephen's domination at San Diego State and vast experiences gained with Team USA last summer have done nothing to change our thoughts about his abilities."
A finalist for the 2009 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award, Strasburg posted 13 double-digit strikeout totals in 2009, and he worked scoreless ball seven times in 15 starts. His regular season and conferencetournament efforts-San Diego State went 14-0 when he pitched-were largely responsible for the Aztecs securing their first NCAA Regional berth since 1991.
In three collegiate seasons, Strasburg went 22-7 with seven saves and a 1.59 ERA (43 ER/243.1 IP) in 52 games for San Diego State. He was San Diego State's closer as a freshman and their top starter each of the last two seasons. In three seasons at SDSU, he was twice named Mountain West Conference Pitcher of the Year, and in 2007, he was named MWC Co-Freshman of the Year.
Strasburg's baseball experiences extend far beyond the college level, however, as last summer he pitched for Team USA in the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. By doing so, he became the first collegiate member of Team USA since professional players were permitted in the Olympics in 2000. His two-start stint-during which he posted a 2.45 ERA-in the Olympic tournament, coupled with his performance last summer with Team USA's undefeated (24-0) National (collegiate) Team, made Strasburg the recipient of the 2008 Richard W. "Dick" Case Award as Team USA's Athlete of the Year.
In the summer of 2007, Strasburg pitched for Torrington in the New England Collegiate Baseball League, where he went 1-0 with seven saves and a 1.29 ERA. Following that summer season, Strasburg was named the NECBL's Top Pro Prospect and Top Reliever.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.