The Washington Nationals just made the official announcement. Stephen Strasburg is starting Game 4 of the NLDS vs the Chicago Cubs.
Less than twenty-four hours after Strasburg’s flu-like symptoms made the Nationals decide to stick with Tanner Roark who was scheduled to start Game 4 before it was postponed by rain on Tuesday night, and after a firestorm of media coverage of the decision and the handling of the news, Strasburg will actually take the mound in the fourth game of the best-of-five series, in which the Nats currently trail, 2-1.
With the season on the line, fans and reporters across the country were shocked by the news that Strasburg, who was said to be under the weather on Tuesday, would be held out of a win-or-go-home game, even though from what GM Mike Rizzo said on 106.7 the FAN in D.C. this morning, anyone who saw Strasburg yesterday would understand that it was better for the team’s chances to go with Roark at 100% than a less-than healthy Strasburg.
Apparently something changed today, however, as the Nats sent out a note through the PR Twitter feed confirming that their 29-year-old right-hander would go today:
#Nats: RHP Stephen Strasburg will start for the #Nationals today in Game 4 of the NLDS.— federalbaseball (@federalbaseball) October 11, 2017
By the time that announcement came, there were reports that it was official, with the Cubs letting reporters know that they’d received a lineup card with Strasburg’s name on it and made a change accordingly:
Strasburg on Nats' lineup card, Heyward for Schwarber— Mark Gonzales (@MDGonzales) October 11, 2017
Cubs receive lineup card with Strasburg's name on it, will now sub in Heyward for Schwarber.— Patrick Mooney (@MooneyNBCS) October 11, 2017
If this is all just too much for you... too bad. It’s going to get a little crazier before it’s time for the game to start. GM Mike Rizzo and Nationals’ skipper Dusty Baker will meet with reporters at Wrigley Field to discuss everything in the next hour...
If you were still wondering if it’s true, the Nationals released the lineup just now and Strasburg’s name is on it:
#Nats at #Cubs #NLDS Game 4: Turner SS, Werth LF, Harper RF, Zimmerman 1B, Murphy 2B, Rendon 3B, Wieters C, Taylor CF, Strasburg P— federalbaseball (@federalbaseball) October 11, 2017
What’s next? Hopefully Strasburg took the last 24-ish hours of reporting personally, because, as Rizzo told The Sports Junkies earlier this season, surly Stras is the best Stras. “I love when Stras is surly, man, because that means he’s fired up and ready to go, so a surly Strasburg is good with me. I love it.”