By Chris Lingebach

WASHINGTON — While everyone awaits the verdict on Stephen Strasburg’s injury, which caused him to exit Wednesday’s game in the third inning, Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer offers what may be a ray of sunlight.

Strasburg, who underwent Tommy John surgery in 2010, left the field covering his mouth with his glove, seemingly signaling his latest injury — whatever it is — may be worst-case scenario. That’s how reporters on the scene and fans took it, anyway.

“Yeah, we all were caught off guard and we were all sitting there scared as anybody,” Scherzer told 106.7 The Fan’s Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier on Thursday afternoon.

“Anytime a pitcher’s talking about his elbow and he’s had Tommy John,” Scherzer said. “Everybody’s heart went into their lungs.  It was one of those things that, when the doctors were able to examine him, and he just thinks that it’s in the back of his elbow and it’s not the Tommy John. But I guess they said he’s getting MRIs today and get a clearer picture once we go to the field today, but just cross your fingers and hope for the best.”

It’s unclear whether Scherzer was referring to a team doctor or Strasburg when stating “he just thinks that it’s in the back of his elbow and it’s not the Tommy John,” but that could represent good news — considering the dire circumstance — regardless of the source.

“The location could mean that it’s not the same?” Paulsen followed up. “I mean as a pitcher, you know all about this stuff, I’m sure.”

“I mean I do and I don’t,” Scherzer said. “I know everything about the shoulder; I don’t know everything about the elbow, knock on wood. Just the brief conversation, you just hope that there’s just inflammation in the elbow and that’s just creating tension within the elbow. And if that’s the case, then that’s something that can be addressed and that could be best-case scenario. So that’s really what we’re hoping for. I just hope that it’s just inflammation within the elbow that’s causing the discomfort.”

Follow @ChrisLingebach and @1067TheFan on Twitter.


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