Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Stephen Strasburg throws off a mound under the watchful eye of Davey Johnson.
Nine pitchers threw off the bullpen mounds this morning, headlined by Stephen Strasburg, Chien-Ming Wang and Drew Storen. (Gio Gonzalez and Sean Burnett were supposed to join them but instead were whisked away to a batting tunnel to throw their pitches in front of cameras filming scoreboard videos for the regular season.)
Johnson had some hard-and-fast rules in place for this first throwing session: Fastballs and changeups only. No breaking balls, though a couple of guys tried to sneak some cutters in and pass them off as fastballs.
Pitchers also weren't throwing at 100 percent quite yet, so it's tough to put much stock in their performances. That said, both Strasburg and Wang looked fine, throwing smooth and easy.
"Stras looked like Stras," Johnson said, adding that Wang's motion looked "exceptionally fluid."
Strasburg paired up with batterymate Wilson Ramos, making his spring debut following a harrowing offseason in Venezuela (more on that in a little while). The duo worked well together, and when the 10-minute session wrapped up, they embraced and Ramos offered up a simple: "Atta boy, Stevie."
Though the workout was officially for pitchers and catchers only, a bunch of position players were present and took batting practice. (Of the 54 players on the spring training roster, the only ones yet to appear at the facility are utilityman Mark DeRosa, outfielder Xavier Paul and reliever Henry Rodriguez, who was granted a couple of days off to tend to a family matter before reporting.)
Position players aren't required to report until Thursday, with the first full-squad workout scheduled for Saturday.