I have gone on record numerous times saying the Washington Nationals were going to have a vaunted three-headed monster in their starting rotation. With the year Anibal Sanchez had last year, they may have the best top four of any staff in baseball.
Too bad the results didn’t match the projections. One reason why is the injury suffered by Stephen Strasburg has kept him off the field for all but two games.
Fresh off a league leading 18 wins last season, and a World Series MVP, Strasburg opted out of his contract and signed a new 7 YR/$245M deal to stay with the Nationals.
The questions were a plenty for Strasburg. Could he match or exceed his performance from 2019? Could he begin to live up to the big contract? Would he suffer the World Series hangover, so many before him had.
Even though he was on the active roster, it was known Strasburg would sit out the first week with numbness in his pitching hand. When he was able to debut he went just four innings, allowing five runs while striking out two.
His next start saw Strasburg exit in the first inning, again suffering from numbness.
A trip to the injured list followed, and a diagnosis of carpel tunnel syndrome was what was going to ultimately end his season.
A lot of innings, a lot of strikeouts, and a lot of leadership lost just like that. Younger pitchers were thrust into action and their ineffectiveness has crippled the team.