The Washington Nationals are certainly having a season to remember, led by their young studs Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper. In the event that the team is in a pennant race down the stretch, they may have to be without their ace.
It has been made clear by Washington management that in order to preserve his arm for the future, Stephen Strasburg will be shut down after 160 innings. He is ahead of that pace, but the youngster has no plans of stopping.
“They’re going to have to rip the ball out of my hands.” Strasburg told MLB Network Radio
It only 23 years old, Stephen Strasburg has taken the league by storm. He is 9-4 with a 2.84 ERA. Including the All-Star Game, he has pitched 100 innings thus far. This comes a year after he underwent major Tommy John surgery. It would take a lot of courage for the Nationals to impose this limit if it could potentially be the difference between a shot at the playoffs or sitting on the couch in October. The franchise has had more than its fair share of struggles, and it seems like they could break that trend this year.
It is easy for a team to impose this kind of limit preseason, or even at the All Star break. But do they have the guts to enforce this in September, or even October?
That is obviously to be seen, but we know how Stephen Strasburg feels about it. He just wants the ball and a chance to compete.