2.) Stephen Strasburg was an ace in the second half.
Stephen Strasburg has always been a steady, consistent performer for the Washington Nationals. That’s not what most people wanted after his debut was christened ‘Strasmas.’ The former number one overall pick was supposed to be a right-handed version of Sandy Koufax mashed together with Randy Johnson. Somehow a 43-30 record and ERA close to 3.00 entering the start of the year could be classified as a disappointment to some. The first half of the year was ugly for Strasburg, who has already gone under the knife for Tommy John. Injuries limited the right-hander to only 13 ineffective starts in the first half. Strasburg battled minor injuries and posted an unsightly 5.16 ERA before the All-Star break.
My, how the tables turned after the Midsummer Classic.
Finally healthy, Strasburg pitched to a 6-2 record with a 1.90 ERA in 10 second half starts. He struck out 12.5 per nine while walking only 1.1 walks per nine. Strasburg had a ridiculous 11.50 K/BB ratio, and allowed just a .179 batting average once he got rolling. Only Jake Arrieta and Clayton Kershaw were more dominant down the stretch. There is chatter that the Nationals will look to trade Strasburg once again. That would bring back a prospect mother lode. The Nationals could also hold onto Strasburg and hope to re-sign him to a long-term extension. A pairing of Max Scherzer and a dominant Strasburg would allow the Nationals stay close to the Mets when it comes to the most-dominant-rotation-in-the-league debate.