Stephen Strasburg on Throwing Restrictions: “I Just had an Extra Month of the Offseason. I’m Chomping at the Bit Right Now.”

January 28, 2013 – 8:30 am by Steven Cuce

As noted here on SRI, there’s no sugarcoating the fact that Stephen Strasburg being shut down on Sept. 12 would severely cost the Washington Nationals a chance at winning a World Series last postseason, and it ended up being true. Certain members of the Nationals front office may never be forgiven for what they did with Strasburg during the 2012 season, but now we are onto a new year.

Strasburg went 15-6 with a 3.16 ERA and 197 strikeouts in 159 1/3 innings last year. He feels very good health-wise and believes the extra rest will only be a positive for him coming into spring training.

Stephen Strasburg joined XTRA Sports 1360 in San Diego with Chris and Ben to discuss his throwing arm feeling 100 percent going into spring training, the Nationals winning an NL East division title last year, handling his celebrity status and the Nationals being committed to winning a World Series.

Is everything 100 percent with the arm now? You came out of the season OK?

“Oh yeah, absolutely. The way I look at it, I just had an extra month of the offseason. I’m chomping at the bit right now.”

How special was it for you to be playing for the Nationals and giving the city of Washington D.C. a rebirth by winning the NL East division title?

“Yeah absolutely. We have some of the best fans in the country there in D.C. A lot of them have stuck with us through thick and thin, and obviously last year was a huge year for the organization and we are definitely moving in the right direction. It’s so much more fun when you are playing in front of crowds every night.”

How are you handling your celebrity status now as a top pitcher in baseball? You were sort of getting the Tim Tebow treatment on ESPN at one point?

“I think the thing is I really don’t watch ESPN anymore unless it’s golf or a San Diego State game, actually. I really don’t have any idea of what else is going on. I kind of keep to myself and keep to my family and really just live my life outside of baseball and when the season comes on, it is go time.”

Talk about the moves the Nationals have made in the offseason and what it feels like to play for a team that is committed to winning a World Series?

“I think it’s great. I think they showed a commitment a few years back, especially even when they first started, but nothing really is going to change overnight and it’s awesome having great guys in the clubhouse that I can really lean on to learn how to play the game the right way and just learn the winning mentality. It’s been great to establish ourselves last year, but now we just gotta keep building up that and we still can’t take any team lightly.”

Listen to Stephen Strasburg on XTRA Sports 1360 in San Diego here

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