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Posted at 01:03 PM ET, 08/23/2012

Mitch Williams calls Strasburg Shutdown ‘absolutely absurd’


(Jonathan Newton - WASHINGTON POST)
Many of you have no interest in reading yet another former Major League player turned analyst opine loudly and passionately about Stephen Strasburg’s future.

For the rest of you, I present MLB Network analyst Mitch Williams. The 11-year Major League veteran was asked on 106.7 The Fan Thursday morning what he thought of the Nationals’ shutdown plan. You’ll never guess his response.

“I think it’s absolutely absurd,” he said on the Junkies. “And I would not want to be Mike Rizzo in September when the Nationals are fighting to win that division and get to postseason and then go to postseason, and have to tell the 24 other guys on that roster, oh by the way, we’re gonna take a perfectly healthy Stephen Strasburg and shut him down.

“If you’re not smart enough or good enough as a pitching coach to be able to look out to the mound and know whether or not your guy is laboring or throwing free and easy, you shouldn’t be a pitching coach,” Williams continued. “It’s that simple.”

Not sure what any of this has to do with Steve McCatty. Total cheap shot. And I’m not writing that ironically; this was an undeserved and totally unnecessary shot.

Anyhow, Jason Bishop then asked if Strasburg was destined to get injured again, regardless of the Nats’ handling of him.

“I wouldn’t wish injury on any player, but he has not made any mechanical changes,” Williams said. “And when you’re young, you can get away with things. You have more flexibility, you have more strength. When you get to that age 25, 26, bad mechanics are gonna get exposed. And until that Inverted W that he throws with [on] his front side, until he corrects that and gets his front side pulling his back side through, he’s gonna have problems.

“And I do believe that at some point he’ll break down again,” Williams concluded. “If you break down and you don’t change anything, you’re not very smart, because you broke down for a reason. And I’ve always said, it ain’t how many you throw, it’s how you throw ‘em. And it only takes one delivered the wrong way for something to blow up.”

Well, this is a cheerful interview so far. The Nats are absurd, Steve McCatty shouldn’t be a pitching coach, and Stephen Strasburg is not very smart. Anyone else?

“If Scott Boras wants to get involved as heavily as he gets involved with all his clients — and this article that him and Mike Rizzo built this team, and bet that arrogant about it — then go to Mike Rizzo and say my client is not throwing out of a slidestep any more,” Williams later said. “Because what that does is, your lower half gets down the mound too quick, your arm gets stuck behind you and you have to blow your top side wide open to get your arm through. So if I’m gonna be Scott Boras and be arrogant about something, that’s what I’m gonna be arrogant about. My guy is not throwing out of a slidestep any more.”

Concluding thoughts?

“The thing is, if he’s healthy right now, and they shut him down, that’s gonna be a really hard sell to 24 other guys on that team,” Williams concluded. “And it’s gonna put Stephen in a bad position, because everything we’ve heard is he doesn’t want to be shut down.”

Related

Post Editorial Board endorses Strasburg Shutdown

Rick Sutcliffe has a plan for Strasburg

Rudy Giuliani opposes the shutdown

Dennis Eckersley says the Nats have to pitch Strasburg

Stephen A. Smith says it’s disgraceful

Kevin Millar asks the Nats to look Strasburg in the eyes

Jake Peavy says it blows his mind

Scott Boras on possible legal ramifications

Rob Dibble blasts Strasburg and Rizzo

Andrea Mitchell discusses Strasburg on MSNBC

By  |  01:03 PM ET, 08/23/2012

Categories:  Nats | Tags:  Stephen Strasburg, Mitch Williams, Mike Rizzo, Steve McCatty, Scott Boras

 
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