Saturday, June 1, 2013

Strasburg going to D.C. with oblique strain

USA Today Sports Images
Stephen Strasburg was pulled after two innings at Turner Field.
Updated at 12:03 a.m.

ATLANTA — Stephen Strasburg is heading back to Washington to have a strained right oblique muscle examined by team doctors, leaving the Nationals to contemplate placing their ace on the disabled list.

Strasburg was forced to depart Friday night's game against the Braves after only two innings, with lingering tightness in his right lower side, below the ribcage. The right-hander said he had experienced a similar sensation in several previous starts, though it progressively got worse during this abbreviated outing.

"The last few starts, I'd feel it warming up [but] I'd go out there and I wouldn't feel anything," he said. "Tonight, it was more kind of like the reverse. I felt really good in the bullpen. I threw a couple pitches in there, and it started to tighten up. I felt it more and more. Nothing I could do about it. I'm kind of frustrated. You want to give at least seven, eight innings a start."

Strasburg's velocity and results didn't appear to suffer from the injury. His fastball reached 98 mph during the second inning, he threw 23 of 37 pitches for strikes and he allowed only one run on two hits.

But Kurt Suzuki could tell something wasn't right when Strasburg was having trouble finishing his pitches and then had to stretch his back after each throw, unable to immediately receive the ball back from his catcher.

"He was wiggling," Suzuki said. "I had to double-pump, like, every pitch because I couldn't throw the ball back to him. So you knew something was physically wrong with him."

Following the second inning, Strasburg had a long talk in the Nationals dugout with manager Davey Johnson, pitching coach Steve McCatty and head athletic trainer Lee Kuntz, who decided not to take any chances and send him back to the mound for another inning.

"He wanted to continue," Johnson said. "He was wincing and in a whole lot of pain. I was not so much worried about his back as I was worried about his arm. Anytime you have something like that, you worry about putting more stress on your arm."

Strasburg tried to convince everyone he could continue but understood the decision.

"Honestly, I could have gone out there and kept pitching," he said. "My command wasn't there, but I think I definitely could have pitched through it. But, you know, Davey didn't want to take the chance. You've just got to be proactive about it, get the treatment. Hopefully, I should be able to make the next start."

Strasburg is scheduled to start again Thursday against the Mets in Washington, though with an off-day following this weekend series in Atlanta the Nationals could bring Gio Gonzalez and Nate Karns on regular rest and push Strasburg's next turn back to June 8 against the Twins.

Whether he's ready to return in eight days remains to be seen. The Nationals have always been extra protective of Strasburg, and after watching teammate Ross Detwiler struggle to return from a similar oblique strain, they may err on the side of caution in this case.

For now, Strasburg is scheduled to return to Washington, where he'll be examined by team medical director Wiemi Douoguih before any decisions are made.

"Obviously, there's something strained in there, because he was experiencing some pain when he was throwing," Johnson said. "Let's just hope it's correctable."

Strasburg has had plenty of problems in Atlanta before. He departed a start last summer due to severe dehydration on a 106-degree afternoon and had to be put on an IV in the clubhouse. He also dealt with what Johnson called "forearm tightness" during his previous start here April 29, though he insisted all along nothing was wrong and he made his next scheduled start.

In five career starts at Turner Field, Strasburg now owns a 5.24 ERA, averaging only slightly more than four innings per appearance.

38 comments:

Chevy Chase Bob said...

Curse of the "World Series or Bust".

Rabbit34 said...

Yeah Chevy, I think we're going to sit this one out.

JaneB said...

I blame this plague of injuries on the locusts.

Rabbit34 said...

This was supposed to be our year. The baseball-gods new they were going to do this to us, so they gave us last year. As the Red Sox fans used to say..."wait 'till next year". Now we can just relax and Enjoy the games for baseball sake...and to please the gods!

sjm308 said...

Rabbit - before last year that was my exact mantra, just enjoy the game of baseball for what it is, a great game. Of course some of that was because our team was not really very good but I agree with you 100%, its still a great game and we have major league baseball in our city.

Go Nats!!

Clip&Store said...

The curse of WSOB

Less Platu said...

Curse of the Michael Morse Panic Dump

ehay2k said...

On TV, I saw him roll his shoulders and grimace, then the radar gun showed 93 and 94 on his fastball.
I said "shoulder" right away. Could just be tight, but we will know more in a couple days.

Steve Miller said...

Craig is pitching great!

Paul Gerrish said...

I could have told you this would happen. They had their chance last year and they funked up, they could managed Strasburg better(miss every 3rd start from mid August to October) and had him for the playoffs. They would have cruised to the WS and won it all. Seize the moments, the moments are fleeting. Now they will be chasing what could have been. Proving once again, the minds in Washington are dysfunctional.

Paul Gerrish said...

I could have told you this would happen. They had their chance last year and they funked up, they could managed Strasburg better(miss every 3rd start from mid August to October) and had him for the playoffs. They would have cruised to the WS and won it all. Seize the moments, the moments are fleeting. Now they will be chasing what could have been. Proving once again, the minds in Washington are dysfunctional.

tayo said...

Stras shutdown has nothing to do with this season.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Julie Alexandria still clueless

Jordan Albro said...

Haha Paul why aren't you running an organization yourself with that stunning declaration?

The Phat Controller said...

No excuses, no whining . . . hate to say it, but Stras' situation doesn't change the fact that they can't score runs, the bullpen doesn't shut any team down, and the defense is giving up runs whereas they saved runs last year. Take out May to August of last year, and they are a slightly-better-than-.500 club. Which is what they were in 2011.

Mark Grabowsky said...

I fully expect Storen to give up at least two runs in the 8th. Hate to say it but that's what I fear is coming.

Mark Grabowsky said...

I fully expect Storen to give up at least two runs in the 8th. Hate to say it but that's what I fear is coming.

Mark Grabowsky said...

I was wrong. Good work, Drew.

JaneB said...

And thank you Craig!

Eric said...

This thread is HILARIOUS in hindsight. Well done everyone ;)

Drew said...

Rendon promoted to Syracuse!

Happy 23rd birthday in advance.

(2b or not 2b? That is the question.)

John C. said...

The know-it-alls on the Strasburg shutdown emerge again! Geniuses, one and all. Not one has ever explained to me how limiting Strasburg's innings would have kept the Nats in first place (the Braves cleverly limited Medlen's innings so he was available for the Wild Card game and beyond - how did that work out for them?)

There is also the implicit assumption that the Nationals would have won if Strasburg had pitched. You can't fight the narrative with common sense. Even ignoring Stras's inconsistency late in the year, and the fact that the pitcher who replaced him (Det) had the best start of any Nats pitcher in the NLDS - even ignoring that, there were no guarantees. In 2003 the Cubs leaned hard on Wood and Prior, didn't even make the WS, and haven't won a playoff game since. And yet the geniuses are so sure. Nope, can't fight the narrative.

Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said...

You are so right, John C. The idiocy of the Baseball Network guys and Jim Kaat et al never ceases to amaze me. They start with one fallacy, compound it with out illogical assumptions and -- voila -- conclude the Earth is flat.

And you can't argue with them. Because they are absolutely certain the Earth is flat.

NatsLady said...

John C, it's useless to try to explain it to the outsider/trolls. It was Stras' hot start in the spring that GOT us to the playoffs... It's not like we made it by such a big margin. White Sox limited Sale--they didn't get to postseason either.

We've been over this 1,000 times and the facts don't change: Rizzo and Davey did the best they could with the information at hand to (a) protect Stras and (b) get to the postseason. All the calculations of skip a start, shut him down in July/August and restart him in October, etc. etc. etc. are FLAWED.

NatsLady said...

Michael Morse is injured--again. I'm happy with LaRoche and Span. Very happy.

MINNEAPOLIS -- After staying behind in Seattle to treat a strained right quadriceps muscle while the Mariners played a pair of games in San Diego, right fielder Michael Morse rejoined the club on Friday at Target Field in time for a three-game set with the Twins.

Morse isn't ready to play just yet, however. He may not be available until the club returns to Seattle for a 10-game homestand that opens Monday.

Eric said...

It blows my mind this story still has legs.

Although, I suppose in hindsight its painfully obvious that the oblique strain is directly related to the shut down, so I guess it does make sense it's come up again...؟

NatsLady said...

It blows my mind that people still hanker after Michael Morse who is (a) fragile (b) a terrible fielder and (c) has only one HR more than LaRoche and almost exactly the same offensive stats. But there's no changing the narrative that his Elvis wig and goofy smile would spark our bats...

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

Ghost Of Steve M. said...
Rendon to Syracuse

May 31, 2013 11:54 PM

Drew said...
Rendon promoted to Syracuse!

Happy 23rd birthday in advance.

(2b or not 2b? That is the question.)

June 01, 2013 12:10 AM


Drew, do you owe me a beer if I posted that in the Game Recap Analysis thread?

snopes1 said...

Nats Lady -

You're absolutely right about your strictly analytical assessment of Morse.
But how do I replace the gigglies that my wife got every time Michael did the post-game show?

Maybe the Nats should sign George Clooney as their off-the-bench guy. Clooney can't hit much worse than Chad Tracy has done so far, and he could eat Michael Morse's lunch in inspiring the post-game gigglies among certain fans.

Drew said...

A tip of the Nats brim to Ghost. (Is PBR OK?)

It's interesting to think back 24 hours. The Nats lose 2-0 and Davey says: "We'll probably make some changes. But that's for another day."

A day later Rendon gets promoted to Syracuse.

Eric said...

Agree re: Morse, NatsLady.

Dave said...

I agree with you, NL. But the Elvis wig was Nyjer's contribution.

LoveDaNats said...

The chop. The cause of all Stras's Barves phobias.

Jon said...

Is oblique the shoulder or back, its being reported as both.

JamesFan said...

The Nats have a continuing problem with these hammy, lat strains. They need to fix this and start by looking at their training regime. Hammies used to be fairly rare and lats were almost never heard of. My bet: too many weights, too much time in the weight room, not enough stretching. Hope they check this out with professionals and adjust. Something is not right and it may be fixable.

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

"But the Elvis wig was Nyjer's contribution."

So, all the Nats' problems stem from losing T. Plush!? I am going to start posting this in every thread from now on, maybe several times each.

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

Oh, and /kidding

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

"Hammies used to be fairly rare and lats were almost never heard of."

You are kidding, right?

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