Strasburg Update and the Washington Nationals' Decision

Eli GreenspanSenior Analyst IMay 21, 2009

SAN DIEGO, CA- APRIL 3:  Starting Pitcher Stephen Strasburg #37 of the San Diego State Aztecs throws from the mound against the UC Davis Aggies during their game on April 3, 2009 at Petco Park in San Diego, California. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)

San Diego State pitcher Stephen Strasburg, the presumtive No. 1 pick in this year's draft, pitched seven-and-two-thirds scoreless innings, improving to 13-0 with a 1.24 ERA in 102 innings. He has struck out 180 this season. He exited the game with back cramps, but Strasburg said it is nothing serious.

The Nationals have a big decision to make in the next couple weeks. Strasburg is going to be tough signing, probably holding out all the way until the deadline, which isn't necessarily a bad thing considering he has set a new career high in innings pitched.

The Nationals should seriously consider Tanner Scheppers at the No. 1 pick. He has incredible stuff and is expected to rise quickly, assuming he can stay healthy.

Dustin Ackley Update

I wrote about Dustin Ackley last week, basically disagreeing with Peter Gammons' evaluation. I watched some more game footage of him at the plate and I have to admit, I was pretty impressed.

However, his inability to play the outfield this season raises some issues for me as a top 10 pick. Outfield can be very tough on a player, requiring a lot of conditioning. Be away from that for a year, and then being asked to adjust in the minor leagues while adjusting to wooden bats and professional pitching, seems like a tough task.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.