A little later, it seemed as if the luck of the extinct team had worn off on him.
Pitching in his first game since coming off the 15-day DL, the Washington Nationals rookie gave up six runs in 4 1/3 innings of work in an 8-2 loss to Florida. Dan Uggla(notes) did a a majority of the Strasburg spoiling, hitting a two-run homer in the first and a two-run double in the third at Nationals Park.
It was by far the worst start of Strasburg's young career and his ERA rose accordingly from 2.32 to 3.07. As a point of comparison, the righty didn't give up a combined six runs until the fifth start of his season.
Strasburg, of course, was going to have a bad start at some point and his first start since July 21 because of shoulder stiffness was a prime pitfall candidate.
But Strasburg wouldn't blame his recent injury for his performance.
From the Associated Press:
"Arm felt really good. Nice and loose. Everything felt 100 percent. Just didn't know where it was going today," Strasburg said. "Being on the DL, and then coming back, and maybe expecting maybe a little too much out of myself — kind of got in my head a little bit out there."
Again, one poor start is not the cause for concern as Strasburg will have dozens of them if he has a lengthy career. But since we've been noting all the great firsts with him here on the Stew, it only seems appropriate to note the first start he'll want to forget.