SI Strasburg cover jinx is real & Chicago gets its revenge

Stephen Strasburg dominates before President Obama, but Nationals lose to White Sox in 11 inningsThe Post
Zuckerman: Strasburg’s Brilliance Wasted CSN Washington
Last night, the Washington Nationals lost a game that Stephen Strasburg pitched for the first time. With President Barrack Obama and his Chicago White Sox cap in attendance, the Nats fell in 11 innings to the Southsiders, 2-1. Sure enough this non-win for Strasburg and loss for the Nats came the day after this week’s Sports Illustrated with Strasburg as coverboy arrived in my mailbox. His appearance bumped the newly crowned Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks off the cover everywhere but Chicagoland. So, the win was a measure of revenge for the Windy City in addition to a total validation of SI Cover Jinx theory — a 1 run Strasburg loss is really that terrible.

Strasburg was brilliant again, striking out 10 over 7 innings and 85 pitches. With that kind of efficiency, I agree with SI’s Jeff Pearlman that the Nats ought not think too much about changing Strasburg. He has 32 Ks in his first 3 starts, an all-time record.

In his post-game remarks, Strasburg was disappointed for not covering first base well enough on Juan Pierre’s bunt to lead off the game. A bloop double and a groundout would score Pierre, the only run Strasburg would give up. Stasburg than dominated for the rest of the game, but the limp Nats offense could not capitalize. It was not until the bottom of the 7th inning that the Nats could get something going. 3B Ryan Zimmerman singled and 1B Adam Dunn doubled him home a deep drive to left center that was about 15 feet short of a homer. LF Josh Willingham grounded out to end the Nats scoring.

The game reached the 11th inning tied at 1, but rookie reliever Drew Storen could not get the job done. Mark Kostay singled and moved over to third with two consecutive sacrifices. Zimmerman successfully fielded a hot shot by Alex Rios that was scored an infield hit. His throw was too high, bouncing off Adam Dunn’s outstretched glove. Had Dunn gotten it, it would have ended the White Sox inning, instead it allowed the winning run to score. A tough way to loss a game. They come back at 4:10 p.m. today on FOX.

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