The answer is: Blake Treinen.

The question: Which former South Dakota State pitcher was name checked by Alex Trebek on a recent episode of 'Jeopardy!'.

During Wednesday night's 'Double Jeopardy!' round, Treinen was the question to this answer in the 'Hard Throwing Pitchers' category:

The Nationals’ Blake Treinen has hit 100 mph with this pitch that gets its name from its downward motion.

FanGraphs listed Treinen’s sinker as the second-fastest in baseball last season, behind Jeurys Familia of the Mets. Treinen's average speed - 96.3 miles an hour. According to BrooksBaseball.net, Treinen threw four sinkers of at least 100 miles per hour during a May 29 appearance against the Cincinnati Reds last season.

In an interview with Associated Press, Treinen says the 'Jeopardy!' mention caught him completely off guard:

My mom sent me a text saying to call her, so I called her and asked if everything was OK. She was at my aunt and uncle’s house in Osage City [Kansas] and they watch 'Jeopardy!' every night. My name popped up and they said they about flipped out of their rocker. It was funny. It's kind of neat. But outside of that, I don't really know what to say.

Treinen is in Spring Training preparing for his third major league season with the Nationals. He tied for the team lead in appearances last season, pitching in 60 games. He posted a 2-5 record with a 3.86 ERA in 67.2 innings.  In his career, he's appeared in 75 games, with a 4-8 record with a 3.27 ERA and seven saves.

The Osage City, Kansas native pitched for SDSU in 2010 and 2011, compiling a 14-4 record with 166 strikeouts in 159 1/3 innings. He was a 23rd round draft pick of the Florida Marlins in 2010.  But Treinen returned to the Jackrabbits for his senior season, earning all-Summit League honors.  In 2011, the Oakland Athletics drafted Treinen in the seventh round with the 226th overall pick. The right-hander was traded to the Nationals prior to the 2013 season.


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