by Brian Tinsman

WASHINGTON — Players won’t report to their new spring training facility in West Palm Beach for another three months, but Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg is taking steps now to put an up and down 2015 behind him.

Part of that process was identifying the source of discomfort in his pitching shoulder and having it surgically removed.

MLB insider Jon Morosi spoke with Strasburg’s agent, Scott Boras, who relayed good news on his condition:

“Scott Boras said Stephen Strasburg had a non-cancerous growth surgically removed from his back about one month ago. Boras said growth was ‘muscular’ in origin and caused discomfort while pitching; said surgery was successful and Strasburg is doing well.”

Strasburg pitched in only 23 games last year, making two trips to the disabled list for neck tightness and a strained left oblique. He also missed a month of action working on his mechanics, something that may have been affected by the growth.

Yesterday, Morosi delivered more Strasburg news, this time from Nats general manager Mike Rizzo:

“Mike Rizzo said no GM has inquired this week on trade availability of Stephen Strasburg — but he’s heard from teams on Papelbon and Storen.”

Drew Storen was the team’s closer until the trade deadline, saving 29 games with 1.73 ERA before the trade deadline. His numbers ballooned after being moved into a setup role, and his finished the season with a 3.44 ERA.

Storen is due for arbitration this offseason, but made $5.7 million in 2015.

Jonathan Papelbon was disappointing in his Washington tenure, logging a career-worst 3.04 ERA and saving just seven games in 22 appearances for the team.

He also had a very public, physical confrontation with outfielder Bryce Harper after the latter declined to run out a pop-fly late in the season.

Papelbon is due $11 million in 2016.


Follow Brian Tinsman and 106.7 The Fan.


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