By: Jason M. Sanin
When he entered Major League Baseball, Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg was predicted to be a star, and one of the best pitchers in this era of baseball. But injury issues have plagued Strasburg since his entry into professional baseball, and he is back on the disabled list now, which will make things more difficult for his club and baseball betting experts going forward.
Strasburg Suffers Oblique Strain
Earlier this week, Strasburg was placed on the fifteen day disabled list due to a strained oblique muscle. This marks Strasburg’s second stint on the disabled list this season, with the first coming earlier in the year due to stiffness in his neck. Over the course of his career, Strasburg has made a habit of visiting the disabled list, with a Tommy John elbow surgery already under his belt as well.
This time, Strasburg’s injury comes at a very inconvenient time for his team, not that there is ever a convenient time for a big name player to miss time due to injury. The Nationals currently stand three games ahead of the New York Mets for first place in the National League East, a lead that may be impacted by Strasburg’s absence.
A Disturbing Trend
More importantly than the impact that Strasburg’s injuries will have on this season is the impact his repeated trips to the disabled list have on the Washington Nationals as a whole.
First of all, his teammates and the team’s executives have no reason to have any faith in Strasburg to lead them to success in the playoffs, which was the team’s intention when they drafted him to start his professional career. Even in years that the Nationals qualified for Major League Baseball’s postseason, his availability hasn’t always been a given. The 2012 season was a perfect example of this, as Strasburg was shut down by Nationals management and held out of the playoffs even though he was healthy out of fear for his health. The Nationals went on to flame out in the first round of the playoffs that season, in a perfect encapsulation of Strasburg’s time in Washington so far.
Is Strasburg That Good To Begin With?
While Stephen Strasburg was predicted to be one of the best pitchers in Major League Baseball when he was drafted by the Nationals, his performance on the field has not always been at the level one would expect from a highly touted player such as himself. This leads one to wonder if Strasburg is worth the effort at all and if baseball tipsters should back him with confidence.
In his career, Strasburg has had only one season with 15 wins, which was the 2012 season that he was shut down before the playoffs. He has not pitched a full season with an ERA above 3.00, and has an ERA above 5.00 for this season. Strasburg has been a Major League Baseball pitcher for six years, and has yet to put together a complete season of great pitching.
Overall, Stephen Strasburg has failed to live up to his billing as an ace pitcher, and his repeated injuries are a part of the reason why.