By Austin Payne
The Nationals just always seem to be in it don’t they? Whether they lost a player of Bryce Harpers Caliber to a rival team or resign him, they consistently make the proper moves in order to facilitate the organization competing year in and year out.
Having just recently won the World Series this season, where Washington took the previous champion Astros seven games to ultimately secure the win, we cannot overlook the pivotal play of their pitching in this series.
Their most recent resigning, Stephen Strasburg, was of course the world series MVP and arguably the main reason they were able to pull it off in seven games. Having gone 5-0 in his postseason starts and coming out of that with a 1.98 ERA, (See stats) Strasburg was undoubtedly one of the main functions of team success throughout these playoffs.
Being ten years into his MLB career, Stephen has been known as an ace since he came into the league as a top priority draft pick when the Nationals selected him with the number one overall pick back in 2009. As hard as it may be to believe how quickly time has surpassed us and how long we’ve enjoyed his elite level pitching in Washington, he’s still just coming into his prime.
Almost unlike any other sports league, the MLB really requires your time to be put in before earning that big contract. This often means even high draft picks being sent to the minors, pitchers being at the back of the bullpen, and simply a lot of patience for those who pursue it.
This though obviously pays off when you do it right, with the Nationals signing Strasburg to a seven year, $245 million dollar contract. That’s…well that’s NBA money, if you know what i mean. The richest league in the world, in terms of player contracts and money allocation that is, in the NBA is known for paying top players about this amount each time they come up for a new contract, but in baseball, it’s a little more prestigious. This comes out to about $35 million a year gross and locks Stras’ up with the Natty’s for the next seven seasons, through 2026. (Contract)
Washington undeniably has some of the best decision makers in baseball at this time, and having just captured a world series we’re not exactly in a position to argue against them. They’ve secured their franchise player for the foreseeable future and the remaining prime of his baseball career, and we should expect to see them back in the big game more often than not during that span.