So here it is at last, ladies and gentleman. Today at last the no. 1 pitching prospect in baseball, Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers, will make his major league debut against the St. Louis Cardinals.
The 6-3, 210 pound righthander, who was dubbed “The Minotaur” by the Dodgers blogosphere for his near mythical status as a can’t miss prospect who nobody had ever seen, is now set to become, at 20 years and 67 days old, the third youngest pitcher to make his major league debut since 2000, after Felix Hernandez of the Mariners (19), and Edwin Jackson, then of the Dodgers, who outdueled Randy Johnson on his 20th birthday.
In many cases (see files Hughes, Phil and Bailey, Homer), these pitching prospects don’t live up to the hype, but Dodger fans are optimistic about Kershaw, who gets high marks for his upper 90s fastball, his clean mechanics, and the fact that he has struck out 262 batters in 201 1/3 career minor league innings.
But what Kershaw is most famous for is his over the top power curveball, which drops so much it has been described as “13 to 6,” and has already earned its own nickname from Vin Scully: “Public Enemy No. 1.” Take a look for yourself: