WASHINGTON — Stephen Strasburg is unlikely to pitch for the Nationals in the NLDS, General Manager Mike Rizzo said Tuesday.
Strasburg took another step in his recovery from a strained flexor mass in his right elbow by throwing from 90 feet.
“No update other than he played catch at 90 feet today,” Rizzo said. “And we’ll see how he feels afterwards.”
Asked if it would be fair to say, since Strasburg’s only now throwing from distance on flat ground, that the NLDS would be pushing it in terms of his availability, Rizzo acknowledged “I think it would be kind of pushing it.”
The Nationals wrap up their regular season Sunday against the Marlins. Their postseason series against the Dodgers begins next Friday, Oct. 7.
“I think that’s fair to say,” Rizzo said. “Again, I haven’t seen him after he had his throwing program today, but just the calendar, it’s unlikely that he’d contribute in that first series.”
The Nationals have been extremely cautious with Strasburg, their first overall pick in 2009, throughout his young career. Washington famously withheld Strasburg from pitching in the 2012 postseason, his second season back from Tommy John surgery in 2010.
The news of his likely absence from their NLDS roster comes at a particularly trying time, on the same day the club announced All-Star catcher Wilson Ramos will be lost for the season with a torn ACL.