Someone Forgot to Tell Strasburg It Isn’t February

Someone must have forgotten to show Stephen Strasburg a calendar, because for the first time in longer than I can remember, we have a free agent signing in December.

Washington made a pretty big splash earlier today by announcing they have resigned the World Series MVP to a new seven-year deal guaranteeing Stras a whopping 245 Million.  The deal is rumored to have no opt-out, a full no trade, no options, and only about 80 Mil of it is deferred.

The deal is a new record for average-annual value which may not last long with Gerrit Cole still on the market.

To be sure, Strasburg not only ensconced himself in Nats lore but reaffirmed his top-shelf status in 2019. He topped two hundred innings for the second time in his career and worked to a 3.32 ERA that may actually have belied the true quality of his effort. With 10.8 K/9, 2.4 BB/9, and a 51.1% groundball rate, he showed all the skills that help a pitcher generate outs. Strasburg graded at a 3.25 FIP, 3.17 xFIP, and 3.49 SIERA in 2019. His 13.4% swinging-strike rate was a career high, though he’s now averaging about two ticks less on his fastball than he did for much of his career. And he showed yet more in a blistering run through the postseason, when he allowed just eight earned runs with a ridiculous 47:4 K/BB ratio over 36 1/3 innings, topping it all off with a World Series MVP.

The deal also likely spells the end of the road for Anthony Rendon in Washington, with ownership already commenting they don’t expect to be able to sign both players.

Strasburg will be 38 when the contract ends.

3 thoughts on “Someone Forgot to Tell Strasburg It Isn’t February

  1. congrats someguy. Let’s fantasize here. The Twins, after missing out on Zack Wheeler entice Madison Bumgarner to come here for one more post season glory round and we get a Nats v Twins game seven with Mad Bum v Strasbourg with the first ball being thrown out by President Elect Biden. It’s Christmas Time!

    My oldest brother John, who races me to the finish line, really likes this song.


    1. There’s a part of me that thinks that if they’re only gonna sign one, Rendon would’ve been the better choice, only because he can play every day and he might age better than a pitcher.

      Mike Rizzo believes on building teams on a foundation of strong starting pitching, and the formula works, but we Nats fans are entering a period now where we’ve cast our lot long term with three guys on the wrong side of 30, and that makes me nervous.

      On the other hand, the Nats won the World Series this year, which in my mind buys them a five year grace period with fans, so let’s worry about age 36 Strasburg when he’s actually 36, and here’s hoping that the Nats can find a decent third baseman this winter, one who can be productive until Luis Garcia is ready to play in the majors.


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