June 7, 2012 |
Bring back a healthy Stephen Strasburg , add all-star southpaw Gio Gonzalez , then call up breakneck Bryce Harper , all of them big talents but with personalities so different they triangulate the possibilities of locker-room temperament. Mix a stoic perfectionist, a grin-on-the-mound extrovert and a teenage demiurge in the Nats ' clubhouse and what do you get? Are they combustible or compatible, contentious or complimentary? This trio will play together through 2016, at least.
May 15, 2012 |
Baseball guarantees bad days even for its greats, the afternoons when fastballs zip six inches too high, when rain makes the ball hard to grip, when popups fall to the turf and when, in some odd cases, even ointment becomes an enemy . Stephen Strasburg had a bad day Tuesday afternoon, the kind of day that reminds you the game sometimes makes even its most talented players miserable. In the Washington Nationals ' 6-1 loss to the San Diego Padres before 23,902 at Nationals Park, one of his worst days as a major leaguer, Strasburg lasted only four innings, including a disastrous first in which he allowed three runs and paused for eight minutes because of rain.
February 14, 2013 |
VIERA, Fla. — Since we first saw Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper on their Sports Illustrated covers years ago, billed as the "best pitching prospect ever" and the LeBron of baseball, fans have waited for the day when they would emerge full-blown. What would the season look like when both were healthy, fully established and ready to lay down a 162-game baseline for their excellence? It's here. The pair's first full ready-for-your-close-up season together has arrived.
August 8, 2011 |
Stephen Strasburg seems to be coming along nicely in his rehab from Tommy John surgery. By all accounts, he looked good Sunday , even if he did give up three hits. That was hardly surprising in his first real outing against real hitters — albeit Class A hitters — in more than a year. He also threw 31 pitches, 25 of them for strikes , also not surprising, given his prodigious talent. The sellout crowd, the large media contingent, the hype — that wasn't surprising, either.
April 4, 2012 |
Stephen Strasburg stood on the right field warning track at Nationals Park on Tuesday afternoon, just in front of the home bullpen, playing toss with a teammate. Strasburg has found contentment this spring with his abilty to blend in, and here was another moment when he looked like any other Washington Nationals pitcher. It may also have been one of the last. Once Strasburg climbs the Wrigley Field mound Thursday afternoon for his first opening day start , the normalcy will cease, at least for a few hours.
July 19, 2011 |
I see Stephen Strasburg pitched a simulated game Monday and is on target to maybe, just maybe, throw a non-simulated game for the Washington Nationals in September. A few years ago, I would have thrown in a joke about all the Nats' games being simulated, but no more. The Nats have reached respectability. My disdain for predictions aside, I forecast a finish of a few games over .500, and they might reach that — with or without Strasburg. Not long ago, I'd have argued to give Strasburg the Garbo treatment until spring training 2012 — in other words, leave him alone.
September 21, 2011 |
Stephen Strasburg is back pitching — and pitching well — for the Washington Nationals. So you might have heard people talking about something called Tommy John surgery. Last season, Strasburg was a sensation, winning five games and throwing pitches as fast as 100 miles per hour. Then the 22-year-old hurt his elbow. Doctors decided he needed Tommy John surgery. Special doctors, called surgeons, cut into Strasburg and replaced the injured ligament in his elbow with a tendon from his thigh.
September 6, 2011
The return of Stephen Strasburg has Nationals fans excited, and after a long rehab from Tommy John surgery the pitcher looks set to take the mound in the majors this week. As Dave Sheinin wrote : Strasburg was an image on a cellphone screen, or a random magazine page you flipped to by accident. He was a fleeting thought in our heads: Wonder how he's doing down there in Florida? Remember the night he struck out 14 in his big league debut? Will he ever be that good again?
October 13, 2012 |
Hours before dawn Saturday morning, Manager Davey Johnson insisted his Washington Nationals would make up for the bitter disappointment their fans had just endured in Game 5 of their National League Division Series loss to the St. Louis Cardinals . We're always told that one of the best things about sports is there is always Next Year. The Nats pitchers and catchers will report to Viera next February full of hope, and the Florida sun will be a tonic to help everyone forget the events of October.
April 1, 2013 |
In the privacy of his office late Monday afternoon, Nationals Manager Davey Johnson chuckled about all those Stephen Strasburg questions from the media after a 2-0, season-opening victory over the Miami Marlins. Johnson figured some would disagree with his decision to remove the right-hander after seven strong innings. And he couldn't have cared less. "Now don't you start in on me, too," Johnson said playfully, moments after addressing the move during a news conference.