World Series MVP and Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg was shut down for the season in mid-August due to carpal tunnel neuritis in his right hand, effectively ending his title defense before it could really get started.
Strasburg recently underwent successful surgery a week ago, according to general manager Mike Rizzo,
"He had surgery [August 26]," Rizzo said on the Sports Junkies. "It was a successful surgery, it's supposedly a simple surgery and I know he felt good after he got out."
Rizzo said the surgery took about 15-20 minutes and that Strasburg felt good afterward. He's now back home in Washington D.C. working toward the 2021 campaign.
"He's already beginning the process of rehabbing it and we're anticipating he'll be full-go by next spring training," he said.
Strasburg's absence in the starting rotation has understandably hurt the Nationals this season. As a team, Washington sixth-worst ERA in the league (5.11) and have had to rely heavily on their bullpen all year.
They still have Max Scherzer and Patrick Corbin to anchor the rotation the rest of the way, but there's a reason why last year's team was so dominant on the mound, especially in the playoffs. Three aces are a mammoth task for any lineup.