David Aardsma to undergo Tommy John surgery next week

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David Aardsma hasn’t thrown a pitch in the big leagues this season. And now it’s very likely we won’t see him again until latter part of the 2012 season at the earliest.

Greg Johns of MLB.com reports that Aardsma will undergo Tommy John surgery late next week in California. The 29-year-old right-hander has been rehabbing a sprained ulnar collateral ligament over the past two months, but surgery was deemed necessary following an MRI exam on Thursday.

Aardsma took to his Twitter account this evening to confirm the news.

Unfortunately my season is over. I guess I wasn’t meant to pitch this year. I will undergo elbow surgery next week.

I can say we’ve exhausted every avenue before we made this decision. But I WILL BE back and ready next year. Thank you all for your support.

Aardsma posted a 2.90 ERA and saved 69 games from 2009-2010. He injured his elbow in May while on a rehab assignment from January hip surgery.

Brandon League has run away with the closer’s job during his absence, posting a 3.44 ERA, 25/7 K/BB ratio and 23 saves over 36 2/3 innings this season. He was recently named to his first All-Star team.

The Tigers are trying to convert Anthony Gose into a pitcher

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Tigers’ center fielder Anthony Gose wants to try his hand at pitching, according to comments made by manager Brad Ausmus on Sunday. Gose is poised to start the year in Triple-A Toledo after receiving a midseason demotion to Double-A last summer following an altercation with Triple-A manager Lloyd McClendon.

While the experiment won’t detract from Gose’s outfield work in Triple-A, the 26-year-old is expected to take on additional bullpen sessions throughout the year. According to MLB.com’s Jason Beck, the left-handed hitter last took the mound in high school, where his fastball was clocked as fast as 97 m.p.h. Gose ultimately rejected the idea of starting his professional career as a pitcher, despite receiving favorable assessments from scouts.

Ausmus said the idea first surfaced at the end of the 2016 season. It appears to be a fallback option for the outfielder, who has struggled at the plate over his five-year career in the majors. Via Chris McCosky of the Detroit News:

Doolittle in Oakland did it and he was in the big leagues a couple of years later,” Ausmus said. “It’s going to take some time. He’s going to have to be a sponge and catch up on experience fast. But we feel it’s worth investigating.

Stephen Strasburg is the Nationals’ Opening Day starter

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Nationals’ right-hander Stephen Strasburg will take the mound for the club on Opening Day, manager Dusty Baker said on Sunday. The news is hardly surprising given Max Scherzer’s questionable status this spring, though it had yet to be confirmed by the club.

Strasburg is approaching his eighth run with the club in 2017. He went 15-4 in 2016, finishing the year with a 3.60 ERA, 2.7 BB/9 and 11.2 SO/9 in 147 2/3 innings. This will mark his fourth Opening Day assignment with the Nationals.

Scherzer, the Nationals’ Opening Day starter in both 2015 and 2016, is scheduled to make his season debut sometime during the first week of the season. The right-hander is expected to take things more slowly this spring as he finishes rehabbing a stress fracture in his finger.

The Nationals will open their season against the Marlins on April 3.