Nationals' Stephen Strasburg Hand Injury Diagnosed as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorAugust 21, 2020

Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles in Washington, Sunday, Aug. 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Manuel Balce Ceneta/Associated Press

Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg was reportedly diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome.

Mark Zuckerman of MASN Sports reported the news, noting manager Davey Martinez said surgery is a possibility after the right-hander saw a hand specialist Thursday.

The 2019 World Series MVP has gone 0-1 with a 10.80 ERA and two strikeouts in five innings for the defending champion Nationals this year.

Strasburg's 2020 season got off to a tough start after he missed time to a nerve issue in his right hand. He was scratched from a July 25 start against the New York Yankees and didn't make his season debut until August 9 against the Baltimore Orioles.

He threw 4.1 frames and allowed seven hits and five earned runs while striking out just two. After the game, Strasburg said that he wasn't back to 100 percent, per Byron Kerr of MASN Sports:

"To be honest, I felt it. I don’t know if it was necessarily like fatigue or just not having necessarily the stamina built up quite yet. But it’s something where I don’t think I’m doing any long-term harm on it. But it does have an impact on being able to throw the baseball and being able to commit to pitches. That’s something I haven’t quite figured out how to pitch through it yet, so I think the goal is to continue to get built up and get the pitch count up to where that won’t be flaring up over the course of the start."

Strasburg made his next start Aug. 14 against the O's but left after recording just two outs due to his hand ailment.

"And now Stephen Strasburg is leaving this outing in the first inning," Dan Kolko of Nats Xtra said. "Clearly still feeling some of the nerve issue in his throwing arm/wrist/hand that had him start the season on the IL. Admitted he felt it in his last start."

Per Kerr, Strasburg went on the injured list with carpal tunnel neuritis of the right hand Aug. 15.

Erick Fedde will likely take Strasburg's spot in the rotation behind ace Max Scherzer, left-hander Patrick Corbin and right-handers Anibal Sanchez and Austin Voth.