Stephen Strasburg's First Rehab Start Done After 31 Pitches, Gives Up Solo Home Run

With the Hagerstown Suns scoring in the next frame, Stephen Strasburg will get a no decision in his first rehab start since Tommy John surgery.

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Stephen Strasburg Returns: Reflections On When 'The Circus' Came To Hagerstown

Stephen Strasburg made his first rehab start for the Hagerstown Suns on Sunday, and the circus that ensued showed that the media and the fans hadn't forgotten about him.

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Stephen Strasburg Says He Felt 'Strong' In First Rehab Start

Stephen Strasburg's first rehab start for Hagerstown since having Tommy John surgery last September ended with him giving up a home run and two other hits. However, the Nationals' phenom said after the game that he felt really good about how he pitched and how his arm felt. Via Nathan Fenno of the Washington Times:

Strasburg: "I felt very strong out there. I'm right where I want to be physically."

That's obviously very good news for Nationals fans hoping he can return to where he was last season. He even threw a few curveballs, and admitted he was surprised with how well he threw them, though most of his 31 pitches were fastballs. He added that he has yet to experience a setback at any point during the process.

Strasburg would likely pitch again on Friday, seeing as it's five days from Sunday. It's not immediately clear whether he'll pitch at a different level of the minors.

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Stephen Strasburg's Rehab Start Includes Four Strikeouts In 1 2/3 Innings

Stephen Strasburg's first rehab start in Single-A Hagerstown since undergoing Tommy John surgery in September of 2010 was certainly not perfect. He allowed three hits and a home run during that time and had to be pulled before the second inning ended because he was approaching the 35-pitch limit the Nationals specified.

However, Nationals fans can console themselves with this: at least Strasburg was throwing strikes. Of the 31 pitches he hurled, 25 were for strikes. All four of the outs he had were strikeouts, including the first two hitters in the first inning. His velocity was also outstanding, as he consistently touched the upper 90s and got all the way up to 98 at some point.

Eventually, Strasburg will need to figure out how to not pitch in such a way where he's vulnerable to the long ball. However, for now, he was certainly under control, which isn't something you can always say of pitchers.

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Stephen Strasburg's Rehab Start Ends After 1 2/3 Innings, Home Run Surrendered

To Washington Nationals fans it felt like 30 years since they last saw Stephen Strasburg on a mound to throwing to live batters. On Sunday Strasburg threw his first rehab start with the Hagerstown Suns and it was done in 30 pitches exactly. While Strasburg's first start was not perfect, it went as well as one could expect for a guy who hasn't pitched in almost over a year and coming back from Tommy John surgery.

The future Nationals ace went 1 2/3 innings giving up three hits, one run, no walks and struck out four. He threw 30 pitches exactly and 24 of those were strikes. The radar gun was picking up Strasburg throwing between 96-98 mph. The only ding to his performance was giving up a solo home run to Jacob Realmuto of the Greensboro Grasshoppers (Marlins affliliate).

Next up for No. 37? Only GM Mike Rizzo and the Nationals think tank knows, but he is expected to continue to rehab in the minors with a possible call up to Single-A Potomac or Double-A Harrisburg in the near future.


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Stephen Strasburg's Rehab Start Begins With Two Strikeouts In First Inning

The wait is finally over.

Stephen Strasburg is back on a mound pitching to live batters in Hagerstown, MD against the Greensboro Grasshoppers and his first inning of rehab work went beautifully. The Washington Nationals hurler struck out two, gave up one single that snuck up the middle and got a ground out. Strasburg was recorded throwing around 97 mph with him touching the 98 mph mark once.

It is a big day in Hagerstown as Municipal Stadium is packed and various credentialed media is in attendance (including ESPN) to see the Nationals phenom begin his path back to the Majors. Strasburg is expected to pitch at least one more inning or pitch somewhere between 20-30 pitches. It is unknown how long Strasburg will be in Hagerstown and in rehab in total, but it is projected he will be pitching sometime in September if all goes well.

For more on Stephen Strasburg's first rehab start and the Washington Nationals, visit Federal Baseball.

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Pudge Rodriguez Will Not Catch For Stephen Strasburg On Sunday

It is a little over half an hour away from Stephen Strasburg's first rehab start with the Hagerstown Suns and the news coming down the wire is that Strasburg will be throwing his one to two innings without the benefit of having another rehabbing National catching for him.

Catcher Ivan Rodriguez was supposed to be rehabbing with Hagerstown at the same time and was scheduled to possibly catch for Strasburg, but the Washington Nationals decided against it citing that Rodriguez has been rushing his recovery from a strained right oblique muscle. His desire and passion to rehab and return to the field "have been more of a hindrance than a boon to his recovery."

Rodriguez has not played in a game since July 6th. The 39-year old catcher and potential future Hall of Famer has left Hagerstown to rehab his oblique elsewhere and at a slower pace. He is 158 hits away from becoming the first catcher to reach 3,000.

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Stephen Strasburg To Throw Two Innings For Hagerstown On Sunday

The Washington Nationals and all of Natstown are anxiously awaiting the return and rehab of pitcher Stephen Strasburg. Strasburg's first stop will be with the Nationals Low-A affiliate the Hagerstown Suns and his first confirmed rehab start with Hagerstown is Sunday. There is excitement and a tad bit of nervousness to see how the young phenom has progressed in his recovery from Tommy John surgery. 

Strasburg will be on a short, strict leash as is apparent by the following tweet from the Washington Post's Adam Kilgore and he will begin his rehab only tossing two innings Sunday:

Stephen Strasburg slated to throw two innings Sunday, per a release from Hagerstown that also contains copious "media guidelines."less than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet Reply

 

If you are interested in amusing yourself over these "media guidelines" then head over to Twitter and search the hashtag

Strasburg will be set to go in Hagerstown on Sunday at 4:05 PM against the Greensboro Grasshoppers.

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