The Washington Nationals’ right-hander Stephen Strasburg has “severe nerve damage,” raising worries about his ability to throw again, according to The Washington Post on Saturday.
Strasburg, 34, was suspended more than a month ago and is unable to participate in any rehabilitation, according to the article. He underwent surgery in June to correct thoracic outlet syndrome and hasn’t thrown in a game since.
He’s had a history of nerve problems.
He experienced nerve irritation in his neck and shoulder during an offseason throwing practise at Nationals Park in Washington in February. He missed spring training and was placed on the 60-day disabled list before Opening Day, and although he is eligible to return, the Nationals do not intend to do so.
He tried to keep in shape by working out his lower body, but he had to quit due to discomfort, tingling, and numbness.
Strasburg has only tossed 313 innings in three seasons since claiming World Series MVP honours in 2019 when the Washington Nationals defeated the Houston Astros in the Fall Classic.
Strasburg pitched 209 innings and ended with an 18-6 record in the 2019 regular season before signing a seven-year, $245 million contract with the Nationals. He had one appearance last season, pitching 423 innings in a loss to the Miami Marlins on June 9, allowing seven earned runs on eight hits with two walks and five strikeouts.
The goal, according to the Post, is for Strasburg to relax and see if his nerve issues improve.
The organisation has nothing to lose by waiting since, according to the source, the Nationals are on the hook for the last three seasons of his deal. His age and injury history would have made insuring his contract prohibitively expensive, assuming the Nationals could have found a business willing to offer disability insurance, according to the Post.
Strasburg has been mostly absent from the Nationals. According to the Post, he did not attend their Opening Day game, does not travel with the club, and has not spent much time in the locker room before home games. Additionally, manager Dave Martinez no longer lists the pitcher in his injury reports.
Strasburg, a three-time All-Star, has been with the Nationals his entire 13-year big league career. He was the first overall chosen out of San Diego State in the 2009 draught.
He has a 113-62 record with a 3.24 ERA in 247 career starts. His 1,723 strikeouts are the most in Nationals history.