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Posted at 4:36 PM ET, 03/ 2/2011

Stephen Strasburg watches the Nationals 'like a fan'

By Adam Kilgore

strasburg grounder.jpg

Early this morning, Stephen Strasburg stood in right field at Space Coast Stadium, playing catch with Lee Kuntz, a daily routine mostly, but not completely, unchanged. Since he first arrived in Nationals spring training, his sessions of catch have included more throws, from a further distance, with greater intensity.

"They don't want me to put too much pressure on it, but they just want it to be a fluid throw," Strasburg said this afternoon. "I'm just going out there nice free and easy. I'm not lobbing the ball. At the same time, I'm not trying play Burnout or anything."

Strasburg updated the media on his rehab, and, really, there isn't a great deal that's changed. "I'm just going out there, doing what I've got to do each day," he said. The difference for Strasburg, compared to the winter, is the setting. He can be around baseball and teammates, which is both a comfort and a tease.

"It has its moments," Strasburg said. "It's great to go out there, pick up a baseball. But there's so much downtime in between. It's pretty hard going out there and doing infield practice with the pitchers, not being able to throw. I'm standing around watching a game, knowing I'm not going to be pitching. It's a different perspective. At the same time, I'm able to look at the game almost like I'm a fan. You really just take the time to set aside what I have to accomplish here in spring training and really just focus on learning."

Strasburg revealed that he's lost around 15 pounds. You can tell - even owner Mark Lerner mentioned the other day how good he thought Strasburg looked. The weight loss, spurred by a change in diet, Strasburg said, has helped Strasburg bounce back quicker from workouts.

Strasburg was hesitant to address his upcoming schedule. Nationals doctors do not share with him their plan, only what he does on a particular day. "We're not going to have all these high expectations and then it not happen," Strasburg said. "The body has a natural healing process. You can't rush that. Whenever I'm ready, I'm going to be ready."

For Strasburg, there is one inevitability. At the end of the month, the Nationals will head north and leave him in Viera, basically alone in the sticky spring heat. That's the toughest part, Jordan Zimmermann has told him. Strasburg has had a taste of baseball this spring, and soon, it's going to disappear.

"It's going to be tough," Strasburg said. "Right now, you feel part of the team. When they all head up north, it's going to be different. Days are going to feel a lot longer, that's for sure."

By Adam Kilgore  | March 2, 2011; 4:36 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Nationals spring training live blog, John Lannan Works On Things Edition
Next: Roger Bernadina's strong start, Bryce Harper's near miss, Nationals pitchers stay under control


If Strasburg wants to watch the AAAA-Natinals like a true fan, he better get used to watching another 100-loss season like the rest of the sorry Natinals fans.

Of course, what Strasburg really wanted to say is that he can't wait until free agency so that he can sign with the O's.


Posted by: SUPER_L0NELY | March 2, 2011 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Poop by any other name is still_ _ _.

Sec 204 Row H Seat 7

Posted by: adhardwick | March 2, 2011 5:06 PM | Report abuse

If Stras is watching the Natinals like the other 3 dozen "fans" that doesn't bode well for the club.

What, considering that the Orioles outdraw the Natinals in the DC-Metro area. Soon enough Stras will realize he can watch a far superior team on MASN, the O's baby!!!!!

Posted by: P00PY_MCP00P | March 2, 2011 5:28 PM | Report abuse

2010 per game attendance:

Washington Nationals: 22,568.
Baltimore Orioles: 21,662.

Posted by: JCCfromDC | March 2, 2011 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Man, leave it to Natinals fans to be proud of drawing 22,568 "fans" last season.

What, with no Stras pitching this year, that will probably be more like 3 dozen "fans."


Posted by: SUPER_L0NELY | March 2, 2011 5:45 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and the JV Orioles team beat the Phillies today.

I see the Natinals losing to the Phillies at least 15 times in the regular season.

Oh snap.

Funny too that some joker wants to pull out the attendance card, when in fact it makes the Natinals actually look worse.

See, "tons" of Natinal fans always said that DC was just yearning for a baseball team. And when they get one do they support it?


Look at the tv rating.

And pointing out the fact that the Natinals, what with being the new team in town (a town starved for a baseball team) with a fancy new (though not too spectacular) stadium can only outdraw the Orioles (who haven't had a winning season since Clinton was in office) by less than 1,000 fans per night speaks volumes about the Natinals.

The Natinals will be drawing around 15,000 in 5 years when they are still losers and in 5th place in the NL East.

But thanks for playing jccfromdc, and thanks for proving my point. Enjoy DC and the lovely Anacostia, not to mention NE and SE DC. They're such lovely places to visit.......

Posted by: P00PY_MCP00P | March 2, 2011 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Wow, leave it to Natinals fans to get all excited about their A and AA backups winning a ST game. Too bad Natinals fans are so pathetic that they have to bring up meaningless ST games to brag about.

Of course, Natinals fans need something to get excited about. What, with another 100+ loss season ahead!!!!



Posted by: SUPER_L0NELY | March 2, 2011 5:53 PM | Report abuse

It's ironic when people try to drive others away (and take away their 1st Amendment Right To Free Speech, much like the Supreme Court upheld today) by trying to even "1-up" them, and in turn just look like a big, huge, moronic, troll.

Carry on.

Posted by: P00PY_MCP00P | March 2, 2011 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Obviously someone doesn't have clue #1 what the first amendment actually says.

Posted by: gilbertbp | March 2, 2011 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Leave it to Natinals fans to not know anything about the 1st Amendment and resort to acting like moronic trolls!

Of course, with a school system like the one in NE and SE DC, I guess it's pretty hard to know anything!!!


Posted by: SUPER_L0NELY | March 2, 2011 6:05 PM | Report abuse

How bout this lineup:
Bernie cf

Posted by: skins_fan_22 | March 2, 2011 6:22 PM | Report abuse

There is a common misconception that the first amendment says that you can say pretty much whatever you want as long as it doesn't represent a threat to public safety, and that nothing bad can happen to you if you exercise that right, and that denying someone a platform from which to espouse his views is a violation of the first amendment.

That belief is erroneous.

While people DO in fact have the right to express pretty much whatever views they want, the first amendment only prohibits the CONGRESS from restricting speech. And by extension, since the rights enumerated in the Constitution can not be taken away by the states, either, the state governments may not restrict speech either.

But that limit on state and federal power does not create an obligation on the part of anyone, including the state or federal government, to provide the speaker with a platform. The Washington Post can ban anyone it wants from posting here (though it clearly has almost nonexistent standards in that regard) without violating the first amendment, since the first amendment does not create an obligation on the part of the post to provide a speaker's lectern.

The first amendment allows morons to picket soldiers' funerals with hateful placards, and people with the emotional maturity of a testosterone-poisoned teenager to post taunts on a public website, without having to fear retribution from the government.

But the first amendment doesn't require anyone to sell the morons the cardboard for their placards, or to provide a web site for childish taunts, or to protect anyone from any legal consequences of speaking freely, which may include being served a taste of his own childish behavior.

As I said, it's obvious that someone here doesn't have the slightest understanding of what the first amendment is about.

Posted by: gilbertbp | March 2, 2011 6:29 PM | Report abuse

"Strasburg updated the media on his rehab, and, really, there isn't a great deal that's changed."

Then one has to ask, Kilgore, why the hell are you writing this story? In your journalism education did they not teach you how to figure out if something is news or not? This is not news. You write for a newspaper, Kilgore. Put two and two together and start writing about stuff that actually IS news.

Posted by: nunof1 | March 2, 2011 6:31 PM | Report abuse

How bout this lineup:
Bernie cf

Posted by: skins_fan_22

How about Ramos for Pudge. And can we just drop Morgan

Posted by: bmmanion | March 2, 2011 6:45 PM | Report abuse

nunof1 -- Stephen Strasburg is one of the most important people involved in the enterprise I happen to cover, and he decided, in conjunction with the Nationals PR staff, that today he would update his condition for a scrum of reporters. When he chats at some length, I feel an obligation to report what he says. It is not Earth-shattering. It probably is of interest to people who follow the Nationals.

Posted by: Adam Kilgore | March 2, 2011 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Adam, don't worry about what these negative-Nancy's say.

As Natinal fans, they don't have much hope to cling to, so it's easy to understand their all-around bitterness.

Keep doing what you're doing, some readers do appreciate it.

You should just mention the O's (the more successful of the 2 DC/MD-area teams) a bit more often.

Posted by: P00PY_MCP00P | March 2, 2011 8:16 PM | Report abuse

For the love of god, people... Adam, you do a great job. Those who harp on your syntax/poor editing (of blog posts)/lack of posts/overproduction of posts/lack of understanding of the newspaper business/fill in your favorite complaint, fail to understand a simple truth: For better or worse, the Post is no longer in the newspaper business. This is a whole new media world, folks, and the reporters who cover the news are figuring it out right along with us. And unlike ever before, they are now in the public eye, subject to not just an editor, but thousands of editors. If you want to get your news elsewhere, please do so. If you want to make relevant constructive criticism about how the Post covers the news, I don't believe it is hard to find contact info for the various section editors or the ombudsman. But please, spare the rest of us who come in here looking for news your anonymous, cowardly criticism of a man who has the balls to do his job squarely in the public eye and attach his name to everything he writes.

On that note, I'm off to write the section editors and ask them to do a better job of enforcing comment ettiquette. There are a couple people on here who are single-handedly making this an unpleasant place to visit and I imagine are driving down traffic. The Post doesn't publish every crackpot letter to the editor so I see no reason why the rest of us need to be held hostage by the acne-ridden drivel camping out in their Timonium basements.

Oh, and Morse-Bernadina-Werth looks good to me.

Posted by: MoMonroe | March 2, 2011 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Kilgore: If Strasburg decides to chat tomorrow - or next week, or next month - and says nothing new, are you obliged to report it? Your logic escapes me, unless you're just a regurgitator of press releases and team propaganda rather than a reporter.

Posted by: nunof1 | March 2, 2011 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Strange how Poopy mildly irritates me, but the nunof1s, and too many others on this site I find downright repulsive.

Posted by: jcampbell1 | March 2, 2011 9:03 PM | Report abuse

If Kilgore had written an article in the newspaper I subscribe to about how nothing much is going on for Strasburg, I mighta been bothered.

Since it's one-of-a-thousand posts on a blog - some clearly done to keep us from bogging down the blog in innumerable comments, some done to just give us a bit of anything/something Nats-ish, some really interesting and informative . . .

it's officially nuno's whining that bothers me more.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | March 2, 2011 11:55 PM | Report abuse

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