Six weeks into his career, Stephen Strasburg is the fourth most marketable player in all of Major League Baseball. According to a survey conducted by the Sports Business Journal -- which polled baseball executives and media members -- the Nationals' young pitcher, who turned 22 on Tuesday, is one of the top draws in the sport.
Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter is the most marketable player in baseball, according to the survey. Jeter is fresh off his fifth World Series title with the Yankees and earned an overwhelming majority of first-place votes.
Market matters Nats phenom Stephen Strasburg is in good company:1. Yankees SS Derek Jeter 2. Cardinals 1B Albert Pujols 3. Twins C Joe Mauer 4. Nationals P Stephen Strasburg 5. Phillies 1B Ryan Howard 6. Rays 3B Evan Longoria 7. Giants P Tim Lincecum 8. Mets 3B David Wright 9. Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez T10. Red Sox 2B Dustin PedroiaT10. Angels CF Torii Hunter
Strasburg received the second-most first-place votes, an indication that baseball is thirsty for a new star ready to assume the spotlight once Jeter retires. Strasburg's immediate popularity -- he doubles game attendance every time he pitches -- has come without the benefit of any national, regional or local TV or radio endorsements.
World of Williams» According to Darren Rovell of CNBC, Redskins quarterback Donavan McNabb was ranked second in the NFL in jersey sales behind Denver rookie Tim Tebow. » Caps winger Alex Ovechkin’s jersey ranks among top sellers in the NHL — both domestically and worldwide.
As of this week, Strasburg had the top selling jersey in Major League Baseball (almost 83,000 in two months). His jersey was so popular that it sold out at last week's All-Star Game -- even though Strasburg wasn't present.
"I have not seen anything like this since Michael Jordan or LeBron James in the NBA," Nationals president Stan Kasten told ESPN's "Outside the Lines."
Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols and Twins catcher Joe Mauer finished ahead of Strasburg in the poll. Phillies slugger Ryan Howard rounded out the top five.
Jim Williams is a seven-time Emmy Award-winning TV producer, director and writer. Check out his blog, Watch this!