We all know Stephen Strasburg as the phenom call-up by the Nationals back in June. But there’s a new problem he faces.

Stephen Strasburg has been diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow. This is not exactly what the Nationals had planned for.

When the Nationals picked Bryce Harper, they expected him to be able to play with Stephen Strasburg in the near future, but that date may be pushed back. Strasburg has a torn ligament in his throwing elbow and is required to get Tommy John surgery in order to get him back to 100%. But he will not be 100% for a while. Strasburg will miss the rest of this season and it is very unlikely that he returns in 2011.

What This Means

Strasburg has been the shining star of this MLB season, and all fans wanted was watch him. His debut was a sellout, striking out 14 versus the Pirates. The Nationals will want to cross their fingers and pray that Strasburg returns to his elite status.

The Nationals were looking good going into next year, having just got back Jordan Zimmermann, their prized prospect. Their idea was to have Strasburg and Zimmermann at the top of the rotation, and the bats of Ryan Zimmerman and Adam Dunn in the heart of the order. But Strasburg’s surgery will put a setback on the Nationals state of remodeling.

Tommy John History

For the record, not all Tommy John surgeries have turned out badly. Actually, many  have come back even better than before. Take for instance Josh Johnson. Johnson had the surgery and look where he is now, at the top of his game with All-Star status. 

Six All-Star pitchers this year were former Tommy John goers. That includes last year’s Rookie of the Year, Andrew Bailey.

The Nationals are on the road to success, but let’s just hope that the Nationals get a healthy Strasburg in return for Tommy John surgery.

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