Should The Nationals Shut Down Strasburg?

6/17/12 in MLB   |   Anthony_Raia   |   37 respect

Over the past several years baseball fans have become very familiar with innings limits. If you are a fan of the Yankees you saw it first hand with Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes, where the constant watching of innings may have stunted their development. Most teams, with the exception of the Texas Rangers, carefully monitor the innings amounts of their young pitchers. This puts the Washington Nationals in a very tough spot.
Jun 13, 2012; Toronto, ON, Canada; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (37) delivers a pitch against the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre. The Nationals beat the Blue Jays 6-2. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE
The Nationals currently lead the National League East, and with their deep pitching staff they look poised to make a run toward the post season. That pitching staff however is led by a young phenom named Stephen Strasburg, who in his short career has had his share of arm trouble. Strasburg looks to be the favorite for the National League Cy Young award, the problem is he is going to reach a team imposed innings limit. The number has not been made public by the Nationals, however most teams follow a rule that a pitcher can't exceed 20% more than his previous high. Strasburg's high is 123 in 2010 combined between the major leagues and the minor leagues, which would leave Strasburg with a limit of 147. That seems rather low being that Strasburg is already at 77 innings, so the number is probably in the 160-170 range.

The Nationals haves stated that they will not move him to the pen even if the team is still in playoff contention. Should the Nationals risk Strasburg's health to make the playoffs?
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6/17/12   |   Chicago   |   38 respect

They should let Strasburg go, but have the medical staff keep an eye.   Hard and fast rules about inning numbers are often mistaken....need to focus on winning while protecting the investment. The only way to do that is let him go but monitor.