Davey Johnson announced on Wednesday that Stephen Strasburg will be the Nationals’ Opening Day Starter on April 1. For Strasburg, this will be his second Opening Day, his first coming against the Cubs at Wrigley Field last season.
The Nationals will host the Marlins this year, and for Strasburg, it’s a chance at revenge. The Marlins roughed up Strasburg in his final start before “The Shutdown” in 2012, scoring five runs and forcing Strasburg out of the game after three innings.
The start will hopefully be the first of 33-34, as there is no innings limit set for Strasburg in 2013. Strasburg leads a revamped Nationals rotation that includes Gio Gonzalez, Jordan Zimmermann, Ross Detwiler and offseason signing Dan Haren. While Detwiler has a small sample size and Haren is a health risk, healthy and consistent seasons from both would likely make the Nationals rotation the best in all of baseball from top to bottom.
In 28 starts for the Nationals last season, Strasburg compiled a 15-6 record with a 3.16 ERA, good enough for his first All-Star nomination. For his career, the former #1-overall pick holds an impressive 2.94 ERA and has posted an outstanding 1.09 WHIP. We’ll see what he can do in his first full season.