Nationals' Stephen Strasburg ready to pitch again

Stephen Strasburg was none too happy with his innings limit and eventual shut down last season.  However, the Washington Nationals did not want to take any chances with Strasburg's surgically-reparied right elbow.  He made his last start of the 2012 season on September 7th, and with having an extra month off, he is understandably "champing at the bit."

According to James Wagner of the Washington Post, Strasburg is still upset about the decision to shut him down, but he is trying to move on and focus on 2013.  He's looking forward to pitching without restriction.  Of course, Strasburg is a little stir crazy by now, his offseason has been a month longer than his teammates'.

Asked about his offseason in a telephone interview Monday night, Strasburg’s response was telling: “It’s been a month longer than everybody else. I’m [champing] at the bit.”

Strasburg underwent Tommy John surgery in September of 2010 to repair a torn UCL suffered in his first Major League season.  He recovered relatively quickly and made his return toward the end of the 2011 season.  Strasburg pitched in five games in 2011 and posted a 1.50 ERA.  Then in 2012, he was given a little more leash.  But not much more.

Strasburg started 28 games in 2012 and posted a 3.16 ERA.  He pitched 159 1/3 innings - about as close as the Nationals could have gotten to their self-imposed 160-inning limit.  Now, with the 2013 season coming up quickly, the team has said no pitcher on the team will be operating under a limit.  This includes Strasburg who will get the chance to show what he can do over the course of the full season.

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