SAN FRANCISCO -- Stephen Strasburg will start for Class AAA Saturday again on Saturday night. After that? It's still up in the air, but June 4 at Nationals Park remains a strong possibility.
The Nationals announced today the top pitching prospect will return to the mound Saturday in Syracuse, facing Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He'll pitch on normal rest following last night's five-inning start against Toledo.
MASN will once again televise Strasburg's minor-league start, this time on tape delay following the Nationals' game in San Diego (starting at approximately midnight).
The Nats actualy need a fill-in starter Saturday against the Padres to take Scott Olsen's place, and Mike Rizzo didn't rule out the possibility last week that Strasburg would be given consideration for that slot. The GM, though, said he wanted to evaluate the 21-year-old's performance in last night's Class AAA outing first. Strasburg wound up allowing two runs (one earned) over five innings, his least-effective start of four so far with Syracuse.
Once Strasburg pitches Saturday against the Yankees' top affiliate, he would be well-positioned to make his big-league debut Friday, June 4 against the Reds in Washington. He would need one day of extra rest to line up for that game, the opener of a six-game homestand against Cincinnati and Pittsburgh.
A June 4 debut also would line up Strasburg to make his second major-league start Thursday, June 10 against the Pirates, giving him two outings on that homestand.