Stephen Strasburg has been scratched from tonight’s start against the Phillies with what the Nationals are calling forearm tightness. Ross Ohlendorf is starting his his place.
Last season Strasburg threw his final pitch on September 7, as the Nationals shut him down for the stretch run and postseason after he logged 159 innings in his first full year back from Tommy John surgery. This season Strasburg has thrown 170 innings–with a 2.96 ERA and the fourth-best strikeout rate in the league–and there were no plans to shut him down.
UPDATE: Chase Hughes of CSNWashington.com reports that “Strasburg felt the forearm tightness … during a bullpen session” and manager Davey Johnson indicated that he was working on a new pitch at the time.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.