Should the Nationals Shut Down Stephen Strasburg?

The Stephen Strasburg debate rages on; should there be an innings limit on the 24-year-old All-Star or not? Well like it or not, there is. The Washington Nationals and their GM Mike Rizzo are planning to shut down their ace after a 160-180 innings, and if you’re counting… like I’m sure most National fans have been… Strausburg currently has around 30 innings before he reaches that threshold with a month and a half of the regular season still to play.

Now the flaw in this plan isn’t having an innings limit to Strausburg considering all the research Rizzo has claimed to put in to this decision.

The flaw seems to be the reluctance throughout the year to manage Strasburg’s innings so they could extend him into October.

Washington has been a better club than most expected, they do have the best record in baseball. However, it’s not like we didn’t expect this team to be in contention and possibly reach the post season at the beginning of the year.

You can’t just shut him down right now, and put him back out there once the playoffs start. That’s why Rizzo and company should have delayed his spring training routine and schedule for a month or so. Then we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

The Nationals distanced themselves from the rest of the NL East in the second half of the season, and tinkering with a 6-man rotation or limiting Strasburg to 5 innings a start should have been something to consider, and still should be.

They’ll have the best rotation in baseball in October if Strasburg is in it. The future is right now for the Nationals; they have a legitimate shot at winning the World Series. When is the last time the city of Washington could say that?

It’s certainly a good idea to keep a real close eye on him when he gets to that 160-180 innings pitched, but there’s no conclusive evidence out there that says if he goes beyond that amount of innings pitched he will definitively get hurt.

Let the young-gun sling his 100 mph heater in October. That’s what I think, but it’s not like I have anything riding on the situation.


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