Nationals choose Stephen Strasburg to start Game 1

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Making official what was expected, the Nationals announced that Stephen Strasburg will start Game 1 of the NLDS against the Giants. It’ll be Strasburg’s postseason debut.

Jordan Zimmermann, fresh off his regular season finale no-hitter, will start Game 2 and Doug Fister will get the ball in Game 3. So far at least manager Matt Williams has not said what his plans are for Game 4. Gio Gonzalez is the obvious option, especially with Tanner Roark likely to work out of the bullpen, but the Nationals could also bring back Strasburg on short rest if needed and then use Zimmermann on normal rest in Game 5.

Strasburg’s win-loss record this season wasn’t great because of poor lineup and bullpen support, but he threw 215 innings with a 3.14 ERA and league-leading 242 strikeouts. Washington’s rotation depth is, on paper at least, pretty incredible.

Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.