Stephen Strasburg, who played catch Sunday for the first time since going the disabled list with shoulder inflammation, threw from up to 120 feet Monday with no reported problems, according to Mark Zuckerman of CSNWashington.com.
“Everything was fine,” pitching coach Steve McCatty said.
Strasburg started at 60 feet — the same distance he threw from on Sunday — then gradually increased the distance to 120 feet, putting “a good amount of effort into each long toss,” according to Zuckerman.
The young phenom will face his biggest test yet Tuesday, when he is slated to throw off a mound for the first time. If all goes well, he will have a simulated game Thursday.
Strasburg is eligible to be activated from the 15-day disabled list on Friday, however Nationals manager Jim Riggleman indicated that he won’t likely return until the team’s homestand next week. By Zuckerman’s logic, the simulated start would line him up for Tuesday, August 10 against the Marlins. Sweet. Just two days before Stephen Strasburg DVD night!
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.