Washington Nationals News: Stephen Strasburg focused on helping Nats win

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Today’s District Daily discusses Stephen Strasburg‘s outlook for the 2016 season and how Dusty Baker is impressed with what he’s seen from the team this offseason.

Good morning DoD readers, and welcome to today’s District Daily. Get caught up on the latest Nats news and opinions with some great Washington Nationals articles from around the web below.

In today’s Daily, MLB.com’s Andrew Simon discusses right-hander Stephen Strasburg. As Simon notes, Strasburg is entering his final season under contract with the Nationals, but his focus is on helping the team win in 2016 and not his impending free agency.

Like Ian Desmond and Jordan Zimmermann in 2015, Strasburg will enter 2016 knowing that it might be his final year playing for the team that drafted him. The Nationals selected Strasburg with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 draft and he has, at times, been one of the better pitchers in the game.

Of course, the biggest question surrounding Strasburg at this point is his health. The right-hander had Tommy John surgery early in his career and has dealt with several minor injuries since then, which makes it complicated for the Nationals to take a risk on signing him to a high-priced contract extension.

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Given that Strasburg is a Scott Boras client, it’s unlikely that the Nationals will be able to sign Strasburg to an extension before his contract ends anyway. Nevertheless, it’s a good sign for the Nationals that the right-hander is focused on helping his team win in 2016 and not on his looming free agency.

Also in today’s Daily, MLB.com’s Bill Ladson discusses Dusty Baker getting a good first impression of his new ball club.

Be sure to check out both articles below, they’re definitely worth a read. And as always, stay tuned to DoD for all your Washington Nationals needs.

Strasburg focused on helping Nationals win in 2016

(Andrew Simon, MLB.com)

WASHINGTON — Before long, Stephen Strasburg will begin what could be his final season with the Nationals, as the right-hander is due to reach free agency at the end of 2016.

But as he looks to reestablish himself following an injury-plagued campaign, Strasburg is trying not to look too far into the future.

“I found with pitching that I pitch better if I don’t stress out as much, if I just focus on the now,” he said on Saturday at the Nationals’ WinterFest event. Read full article here

Baker getting good early impression of Nats

(Bill Ladson, MLB.com)

WASHINGTON — Dusty Baker has been in D.C. for a couple of days, and he is already impressed by the Nationals fans at Winterfest. They are positive and excited about the 2016 team, according to him.

Baker is trying to temper the excitement because — as he pointed out — there are eight more weeks before Spring Training.

“These are real fans that come out here this early,” Baker said. “The weather is nice. I didn’t know how to dress. I have wool pants, top hat, everything, and I overdressed. I’ll tell you I’m glad to be here.” Read full article here.

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