(Strasburg's arrival to Spring Training? Getty Images Photo.)
...or was that Lady Gaga?
Nats pitchers and catchers aren't required to report until Tuesday, and so we eagerly await news of Stephen Strasburg's arrival to find out if he still has the Strasbeard. His beard's Twitter account seemed to indicate Sunday night that he got rid of it.
Speaking of Stephen Strasburg and eggshells, the Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo's piece on Mark Prior in Sunday's Baseball Notes section is worth a read as a cautionary tale, maybe help keep expectations in check as Stras makes his way back. Here's Prior talking about Strasburg:
"I think, given that I was 10 years earlier than Strasburg, he got a lot more media attention than I did. I was very impressed with the way he handled things and how he went out there and was able to shut everything off. It’s unfortunate he got hurt so soon, and I guess that’s where the comparisons come into play."
(Mark Prior, via Boston Globe, 2/13/2011)
Speaking of Strasburg and injury, Thom Loverro's piece on Strasburg from Sunday on Washington Examiner is also worth your time. Apparently Tommy John himself believes Strasburg needs to change his delivery to correct the so-called "inverted W":
"All I am saying is they get in what they call the scarecrow position...and everybody I have ever seen that gets into that position ... when you get your arm hanging down, now you are striding out, and you say, 'I can throw harder.' But it has to cock back and cock forward at a high rate of speed. ... They say if you get strong enough, it will hold up. Well, if you get your shoulder stronger than your elbow, then your elbow is going to blow. And if you get your elbow stronger than your shoulder, then your shoulder is going to blow. Why not just take your hand, move it a quarter of a turn, then when you come back you make a circle. Your arm is up on top and then all you have to do is launch it toward home plate. You take one aspect of straining your shoulder out of the equation."
(Tommy John, via Loverro/Washington Examiner, 2/13/2011)
Ah, enough of this depressing injury talk. Spring is in the air. Happy Valentine's Day, NatsTown.