It was made known that Stephen Strasburg will most likely undergo Tommy John surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right elbow. 

The Nationals award Strasburg with a $15.1 million contract after being selected No. one overall in the 2009 MLB draft.

There is a major issue with this scenario.  In baseball, players can get injured very easily, just like any professional sport, but without a slot system, US players are still going to get large sums of money before ever playing a single inning of professional baseball.

A slot system requires that a  player receive a predetermined amount of money depending upon which pick that player is selected within the draft.

This can cause problems for teams like the Washington Nationals. They invested a large amount of money to the “future” of their organization only to endure a catastrophic injury such as Stephen Strasburg’s.

Although Tommy John is a very successful surgery these days, it will still require hard work and dedication from Strasburg if he wants to pitch at an elite level again. 

The lower budget teams in the MLB—the ones that tend to draft higher on a yearly basis than most teams—are never going to work themselves into contenders if they have to shell out millions of dollars for US baseball players that are hyped to be the next big thing, but never live up to it due to injury or other reasons.

Baseball is such an international sport that instead of spending $10 million on a US player coming out of high school or college, teams can spend that same amount of money on five to 10 Latin American players that have the same, if not greater, potential than the US players.

The current system is going to continue to bury teams, like the Nationals and thr Pirates, if there is not a slot system instituted.

The Nationals were actually beginning to establish a decent fan base solely because of the presence of Strasburg on the mound.  If he recovers from surgery well and regains his form, the fans will come back. But until then, it appears that baseball is once again dead in Washington D.C.

The Nationals do have the debut of Bryce Harper to look forward to in a year or two, but until then, the fanfare and excitement that was generated will be dormant.

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