By Sam Bush
The Phillies signed pitcher Zack Wheeler the other day and reportedly are interested in one of the elite free agent hurlers on the market:
According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the Phillies are “especially interested” in free-agent right-hander Stephen Strasburg.
Strasburg is coming off of a 2019 campaign with the Washington Nationals in which he went 18-6 with a 3.32 ERA, allowing just 161 hits while striking out 251 batters over 209 innings of work.
He was was instrumental in the Nationals’ push for their first World Series championship, going 5-0 while surrendering just eight earned runs in six postseason appearances (five starts).
He made his big-league debut in 2010, going 5-3 with a 2.91 ERA while giving up 56 hits and fanning 92 hitters.
Since then, Strasburg has consistently been one of the better pitchers in baseball when healthy, making three All-Star appearances.
Of course, Strasburg’s injury history is a bit concerning, as arm trouble has resulted in him throwing 200 innings just twice in his career. He also underwent Tommy John surgery back in 2010.
Strasburg has mostly avoided major injuries since, but there is no doubt that he hasn’t exactly been durable.
Overall, the San Diego native has gone 112-58 with a 3.17 ERA while averaging 10.6 strikeouts per nine innings over the course of his major-league tenure.
The Phillies, who won 81 games this past year and have not made the playoffs since 2011, entered the offseason in desperate need of pitching.