The opener of the four-game series between the N.L East-leading Atlanta Braves and the second place Washington Nationals, left baseball fans in the nation’s capital with more than just frustration due to the 3-2 loss at the hands of the Braves on Monday night.
Unfortunately, fans in Washington were also given what some are saying is good reason to worry regarding starter Stephen Strasburg. Despite pitching six innings and allowing just two earned runs, Strasburg was suffering through tightness in his forearm and was subsequently pulled from the game with the score tied at two.
Earning his first no-decision of the season, Nat’s Manager Davey Johnson knew that something wasn’t right with the talented 24-year-old. Done strictly as a precaution, Nat’s team doctors waisted no time in examining Strasburg, doing so immediately after he was pulled in the team’s locker room. Understandably concerned, Strasburg underwent Tommy John surgery in 2010 and was forced out of action for nearly 18 months.
National’s General Manager Mike Rizzo told the media on Tuesday that Strasburg will in fact make his next scheduled start in Pittsburgh this Saturday.
When asked directly about his plans regarding his next start, Strasburg remained boldly optimistic saying, “I’m not missing my next start. I’ll tell you that right now.”
Strasburg, who’s record sits at a dismal [1-4], has managed to post a somewhat impressive eaned run average of just 3.13 and has pitched fairly well in five of his six starts this season.
While the showdown of N.L. East powers resumes tonight at Turner Field, the [13-13] Nationals will try once again to gain some ground on a Braves team that is playing like it’s the mid nineties. Currently in the midst of a power surge courtesy of catcher Evan Gattis and Juston Upton who leads the majors with 12 home runs, Atlanta has built a 3.5 game lead over the visiting Nats in the N.L. East.
Answering the call for Washington will be the very dangerous Gio Gonzalez [2-1], while veteran Tim Hudson [2-1] will toe the rubber for the hometown Braves in the second game of the four-game set that is scheduled to end Thursday.