Remember all the talk of the Stephen Strasburg era when the incredibly-talented right-hander was drafted first overall in 2009? Well, amid all the ridiculous strikeout totals he’s accumulated in his roughly four seasons in the majors, Strasburg has never pitched a complete game and he’s never tossed a shutout. You could say he’s finally “ready” after doing both on Sunday against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Since entering the majors in 2010, Strasburg had never thrown a pitch in the ninth inning until this weekend when he fanned 10 batters and allowed only four hits in a 6-0 win for the Washington Nationals. He pitched long after he was checked by trainers in the second inning for wincing from groin pain. The Gatorade bath he took after the game definitely helped that, much to the nervous excitement of sideline reporter Julie Alexandria.
Unfortunately, the win doesn’t help Washington a whole lot. The Nats are still under .500 and 14.5 games behind the Atlanta Braves in the NL East. As the early favorites to win the pennant this year, the Nationals are going to need a lot more games like this from Strasburg over the next two months for a chance to play for a title.