Washington Nationals News: Stephen Strasburg On DL Due To Left Oblique Strain
By Ricky Keeler
It has been a rough season for Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg. Back in spring training, he missed a start because of a sprained left ankle he suffered during conditioning. Recently, he returned from his first DL stint that was because of a left trapezius strain. Today, it was announced that the Nats are putting Stephen Strasburg back on the 15-day disabled list for the second time this season due to a left oblique strain:
The injury occurred in the fourth inning of yesterday’s 9-3 win over the San Francisco Giants. After getting Buster Posey to ground out to second base, Strasburg left the game with tightness in his left side. In the first 3.2 innings of the game, the 26-year-old right-hander gave up only one hit, struck out three batters, and walked two.
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Since returning from his first DL stint on June 23 against the Atlanta Braves, Strasburg has shown signs of the pitcher that he was a few years ago. Against the Phillies on June 28, his fastball was up to 99 miles per hour. Over his last 18.2 innings, he has given up two runs on nine hits, struck out 18 batters, and walked four. The good news for the Nationals, at least in the short term, is that they won’t need a fifth starter for the time being:
To fill Strasburg’s place on the 25-man roster, right-handed pitcher Taylor Jordan is back with the organization. In two games this season, the 26-year-old is 0-2 with a 8.44 ERA. He made one start back on June 3 against the Toronto Blue Jays, when he gave up seven runs on ten hits over six innings of work.
Down at triple-A Syracuse, Jordan is 2-4 in 11 starts with a 2.97 ERA. He is coming back to the Nation’s Capital with some confidence under his belt when you consider he has given up a combined three runs over his last 20 innings.
Plus, Jordan will likely be the long man in the Nats bullpen after Tanner Roark was used yesterday. Roark went 4.1 innings, gave up two runs on five hits, struck out three, and did not walk a batter on 61 pitches to pick up the win vs. San Francisco
While the Nationals don’t need another starter immediately, the question now is which pitcher will enter the rotation if Strasburg is out longer than the 15 days? Will it be Roark, who has alternated between starter and reliever all season, or will the team call back up Joe Ross, who is 1-1 with a 3.60 ERA in two starts at triple-A Syracuse? That question will be answered soon enough, but one thing is for certain. The rough year for Strasburg is continuing to get worse.