WASHINGTON -- The Nationals will place right-hander Stephen Strasburg on the disabled list with inflammation in his right shoulder, manager Dave Martinez announced after Saturday's 7-5 victory over the Giants.
Strasburg's MRI results confirmed the team's initial diagnosis of the ailment which caused him to leave his start in Friday night's 9-5 loss after just two innings. The Nationals did not offer any timetable for his return or further information on the severity of the inflammation.
"I honestly thought just the inflammation was a good thing and that nothing else was wrong structurally," Martinez said. "As soon as we can get that to calm down a little bit and get him throwing again, we'll be fine."
Strasburg experienced his share of injuries over the past few seasons, as he made five trips to the disabled list from 2015-17. But he has not dealt with shoulder problems recently, which could cause the Nats to handle him with even more caution.
Strasburg said after his start on Friday that he had been pitching through some discomfort in his shoulder for about three or four starts. But considering his velocity remained steady and his results were positive, the Nationals did not worry much about it. That ended after the Giants hit him hard over the first two innings on Friday, collecting five hits and three runs before his day was complete.
"I think every pitcher, if you ask them, they're not going to feel 100 percent every time," Strasburg said on Friday. "I think it's just been something that's been a gradual process. It's been affecting me more and more over the last three, four starts. It's a tough one to gauge, because you want to go out and do your part. But today, it just acted up on me a little more than the other ones."
The Nationals are losing one of the anchors of their rotation at a time in which they are already dealing with the void left by right-hander Jeremy Hellickson, who is on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain. Martinez said the Nats have not decided how they will replace Strasburg, who owns a 3.46 ERA in 13 starts this season, on the roster or in the rotation.
But Washington will have to endure without Strasburg for now, as it hopes to manage its star pitcher in a way that ensures he remains healthy moving forward.
"Right now, just let him rest until we get that inflammation out of there," Martinez said. "We're going to let him rest."