In the Philiies dugout this afternoon, as reporters hurled questions at Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel, the subject of baseball records surfaced, specifically which ones could or could not be broken. Someone suggested no one would match Johnny Vander Meer’s consecutive no-hitters.
Manuel immediately disagreed – and mentioned Stephen Strasburg as one reason why.
“That one could be got,” Manuel said. “I see Strasburg, he’s very capable of throwing back-to-back no-hitters. When I saw the type of the stuff that he has, and pitchers that dominate the game like he does, guys like Pedro Martinez in their heyday, they could do that. Because not only could they pitch. They could overpower you.”
For now, of course, Strasburg is only working his way back from Tommy John surgery to the majors, albeit in impressive fashion. Last night, he stuck out five and did not allow a ball out of the infield in 33 pitches over three innings.
Manager Davey Johnson confirmed that Strasburg’s next rehab start, as Dave Sheinin wrote in today’s paper, is expected to come Wednesday in Hagerstown. The Nationals want to keep Strasburg on his every-fifth-day schedule, and they have made having pitch at the home park of their affiliates a priority.
Hagerstown and Syracuse are the two affiliates with home games Wednesday, and Hagerstown is closer. So if Strasburg does indeed make his start at Hagerstown, which is a level below Potomac, it’s not at all an indication of any regression.
Strasburg will throw a side session tomorrow, either in Potomac or Washington, Johnson said.