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. . . this kid is a man.
On Strasburg saying the decision is out of his hands
“That’s all you need to know. 'It’s out of my hands. I don’t want it in my hands, even though I’m a professional pitcher trying to — from spring training to the end of the season — win championships'....He’s in a totally different world. Remember the Stepford Wives? He’s a Stepford Pitcher.”
On Strasburg as a teammate
“If Stephen Strasburg is naive enough to think that he’s going out there by himself every fifth day, and the defense and the catcher and the pitching coach and the manager and everybody else isn’t out there pulling, trying to get this guy to win, and then he just goes out there and gets 18 outs and acts like this is the way it’s supposed to be? It’s kind of sad in a way. I feel sorry for someone that thinks that’s all it’s about, getting my 18 outs and going and taking a shower and doing it again in five days, and when I get to 160 innings then I’m just gonna sit on the bench and hope that they can do it without me. That’s sad. That’s what it really is.”
On Strasburg’s talent
“You still talk about Strasburg like he’s a phenom. He won his 14th game [Wednesday]. Look at his numbers: 225 innings pitched over three years, and he did have the Tommy John surgery, but he doesn’t have any type of numbers to back up the whole phenom thing. So for Mike Rizzo to be claiming that we’re protecting this guy? You’re getting paid to pitch, pitch the guy in the postseason if he’s not hurt. If he’s hurt, put him on the DL. I want to stop talking about it, because you know what, no one’s that special. And that got my ass canned when I was in DC, because I would just remind everybody, listen, nobody’s that special....A once in a generation pitcher that can’t even average six innings pitched a start? And now he’s gonna be shut down because he can’t pitch in the postseason?”
If you haven’t hurt it yet, it’s not gonna get hurt.
Is Scott Boras gonna come out?
The manager of the Nationals has a world championship ring, called the ’86 Mets, when he was managing Doc Gooden, who was like 20 years old. I think he knows how to handle young pitchers. He’s not gonna burn them out.
The manager of the Nationals has a world championship ring, called the ’86 Mets, when he was managing Doc Gooden, who was like 20 years old. I think he knows how to handle young pitchers. He’s not gonna burn them out
“What the Nationals are doing, they’re doing it on their own, and they don’t have any kind of data to back it up.
I don't think they've revealed all that they know (or at least all the data they're going on), but, from what they've indicated in the press, Dibble's kind of right about this. I've only seen the sports doctors quoted for broader approval of erring on the side of caution, but nothing really firm.
As repugnant as Dibble is, I've got to wonder if there aren't players in the Nationals clubhouse saying the same types of things, questioning the Strasburg shutdown decision. I also wonder if that's going to have an effect on how Strasburg feels about it.
I've got to wonder if there aren't players in the Nationals clubhouse saying the same types of things, questioning the Strasburg shutdown decision. I also wonder if that's going to have an effect on how Strasburg feels about it.
This is all that I'm aware of as well. However, I'd note that I don't see any feasible way for any data to have been collected. The Nationals are essentially in uncharted territory with their approach. The lack of data shouldn't really be that discouraging - they are the data point. Maybe it won't work at all, but I'd rather a team be trying something that's backed with sound reasoning (even if there's no yet data) than just saying, "well, we don't know how to do better than the normal approach, so normal approach it is!".
However, I'd note that I don't see any feasible way for any data to have been collected. The Nationals are essentially in uncharted territory with their approach.
I can't remember which national writer it was (Olney?), but a week or so ago he wrote a long article quoting a number of orthopedic and sports surgeons who were, in fact, THRILLED by the care and concern with which Rizzo and the Nats are treating their young arms. I specifically remember that one of them called it "the new Moneyball."
Nats general manager Mike Rizzo told ESPN he made this call after consulting with one of America's most esteemed orthopedists (and noted Tommy John surgery pioneer), Dr. Lewis Yocum, and other sports-medicine experts. And guess what?
The sports-medicine community couldn't be more delighted to see a team -- any team -- take a courageous stand like this, with a player this prominent, on a team that might be risking its shot to win a World Series in favor of protecting its ace's health.
Let's hear now from three members of that community -- three men who have spent years trying to peer beyond the surface of pitchers and their often-troubled arms:
In addition -- and this point has been made by a number of writers already -- it gives the Nats a GOOD reputation with agents and players, not the opposite. The message they're sending here is "we will care more about your long-term health and career than our short-term interests. You are not just a piece of meat to us." The father of Lucas Giolito (the HS pitcher the Nats drafted and surprised the industry by managing to sign) specifically said the other day that the main reason he okayed the idea of his son signing onto the Nationals is because of the rep they had acquired for caring for young pitching arms -- important because Giolito already had an elbow problem that caused him to fall several slots in most teams' draft estimations.
• "In baseball, this is as groundbreaking as 'Moneyball' was in 2001," said Stan Conte, senior director of medical services for the Dodgers and a man who has been tracking baseball injury data for more than a decade. "They're taking something off the blackboard and putting it into practice, and I don't know if they're right or wrong. Only the future will tell us. But at least this is not another case where somebody is following tire tracks in the snow off the side of the cliff just because that's the way a lot of people did it before. In baseball, we've done that repeatedly. And there are a lot of wrecked cars at the bottom of that cliff."
• We also spoke with Dr. Jeffrey Guy, medical director and team orthopedist at the University of South Carolina, who trained under Dr. James Andrews at the American Sports Medicine Institute and who, like Strasburg, was a pitcher at San Diego State.
One of Guy's missions, dating back to his work with Andrews, has been a proactive effort to promote pitch counts, innings limits and periods of prolonged rest to protect young pitchers as far down the chain as Little League. And he is gratified, he said, to see signs that "that mentality is spreading … and now it's finally getting into all levels of the game, even with a pitcher like Strasburg."
As part of Guy's work, he constantly preaches to young pitchers the need to be shut down -- to "let your body recover, let your ligament recover, let your elbow recover." And it's "amazing," he said, how well even injured pitchers bounce back from those rest periods, "and how strong they feel because they rested."
• Finally, we spoke with Dr. Glenn Fleisig, who works with Andrews at the American Sports Medicine Institute and is widely described as America's most prominent expert on biomechanics. He cited a remarkable ASMI study of teenage pitchers that showed that pitchers who "regularly kept pitching after they were fatigued were 36 times -- that's 3,600 percent -- more likely to have surgery than not have surgery."
"I've been doing research here with Dr. Andrews for 25 years," Fleisig said. "I've done studies where we find two times, three times, five times. I've never found any other study with a 36-times factor."
Paraphrasing him, he said "I hated it with a passion last year, but in retrospect it was the right thing to do."
A baseball team -- a legitimate WS contender! -- says it will shut down its best pitcher for fear of injury.
A married 23-year man shouldn't have to have his daddy speak on his behalf.
The thing that I don't feel like I'm hearing enough in all of this is that while everybody gets to have an opinion, only one guy actually has the responsibility of making the decision.
 What's interesting is if you do a close reading of the Stark and Passan pieces, there's a lot of support from the medical community about this concept. But there weren't many (any?) who said that this specific decision was the right one. Perhaps a bit of semantics, but...
As for the future, what is Strasburg's ceiling now? Its taken him 41 career starts to surpass 230 IP, and he's not particularly economical with his pitches despite excellent control and low hit totals.
They're not planning to shut down Zimmermann. That was last year.
Oh, keep listening. He's all too happy to tell you himself that he's the decider.
would the insurance companies say we won’t cover players that won’t follow physician counsel and advice?
But he's only under contract for 4 more years. Again, don't go Prior on him. But where he is in 2019 shouldn't matter to today's decisions.
Is Scott Boras gonna come out? If he talks about Stephen Strasburg, so help me God, I’m gonna go bananas tomorrow night,
The one thing that is the resonating idea here is you only get one shot at that ring. And you either want to take it, or you just say, you know what, I’ll do what somebody tells me to do.”
He repeats it constantly because he's going out of his way to hammer home the point that nobody has any right to question Strasburg's 'heart' or 'commitment' because he doesn't get a say in the matter.
That's not to say you do something that was so obviously abusive as to what happened with Prior.
he's only under contract for 4 more years
Nobody’s dad gets involved in their Major League kid’s career. It just doesn’t happen.
It's far too early to conclude that the approach has "proved successful for Zimmermann.
The "Joba Rules" had proven successful for Joba Chamberlain, too -- until the very moment his right elbow blew.
If the Joba Rules didn't have as a primary goal trying to ensure that his right elbow didn't blow, they were even more pointless than they appear on the surface.
Mark Prior pitched 211 innings for the Cubs at 22 after pitching 116 innings for the Cubs at 21. Greg Maddux pitched 249 innings for the Cubs at 22 after pitching 155 innings for the Cubs at 21.
Fair enough. Maddux pitched 27 innings at Iowa at 21, so the corrected totals are:
Maddux at 21: 182 IP
Prior at 21: 167 IP
Maddux at 22: 249 IP
Prior at 22: 234
If not, does anyone really think that's going to cost them NL East crown?
Per ZiPS, Strasburg is projected at an ERA of 2.90, whereas Lannan is projected at 4.50. So 1.6 runs per nine innings, so roughly 5.3 runs in 30 innings.
The impression I get is that seemingly the Nats are saying no pitching in September and most certainly no pitching in October.
If Strasburg were to have thrown 80IP last year, would it change the medical opinion of him pushing 200IP?
I dont really understand Davey's career. How does he keep managing this good multiple times and have so many years off in between? Why is he out for 10 years before coming to Washington?
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