Originally Posted by Jollyroger2
The Nats have said since before spring training, no matter what the team's record was at the time, they were going to keep him to roughly 160 IP. Bottom line is they are taking the medical advice they were given and doing what they think best for their long term investment.
I've said many times the other four pitchers are pretty good. SS's ERA is only third best in his own rotation. The team has somehow managed to go 67-44 in the games where SS didn't start. I'm in the DC area so I see them alot, but it amazes me how little people know about the Nationals. The concept still seems to be that they are SS and a bunch of stiffs.
If they do lose in the playoffs, or crash and burn and not make the playoffs, then life goes in. They still have a very good young team coming back next season and they have plenty of $$ to spend if they choose to.
You keep on saying this, and repeating this point, and I don't really see anyone disagreeing with it. If Strasburg was their only good starter, they would not have the best record in baseball. I haven't seen anyone in the thread say the Nationals are Strasburg "and a bunch of stiffs." Gio and Zimmermann have been good, and so have Jackson and Detwiler, but I don't know that I would want to trust the latter two (or John Lannan) to start a playoff game. They would be that much better off with Strasburg than without. And while I understand limiting the young starter to 160 IP, I do not understand the way they went about it. Putting an effective date on the calendar to completely stop the season of one of your best starters, otherwise healthy, seems to be saying that management was not planning on being competitive after that point. I don't really see how they're a better bet in the playoffs without Strasburg than with him. And I also don't understand how they could not have come up with some kind of plan to have him pitching in the postseason, whether that was delaying the start of his season, skipping starts or giving him an extra day of rest, shutting him down a starter or two early before playoffs, starting his season as a reliever; Chris Sale and Kris Medlen will be making playoff starts for their respective teams, assuming they make the postseason, and are also under similar close eyes due to their youth (and possibly their respective health situations, as well).
The point is not that the Nationals are currently a garbage team or nothing without Strasburg. It's that they currently have the best record in baseball and should be a good bet for the postseason, and they will be without one of their best starters, completely voluntarily as some sort of odd hope for the future that pitching a few starts in the postseason will be too harmful for his long-term health. They're that sure they'll return to the playoffs? That those few starts will be too harmful to his long-term health? You would have been fine if they were in a similar situation, the White Sox in September 2005 benched Mark Buehrle (just as a hypothetical)? Or if the Sox shut down Chris Sale this fall, even if they had topped Detroit in the AL Central? I can't think of any precedent for this, nor can I think of any real good reason for it.