WASHINGTON -- The Nationals held an intrasquad game Thursday afternoon, a chance to get their pitchers facing hitters in game situations ahead of their Spring Training opener Saturday.
It offered yet another strong indicator for Stephen Strasburg's health coming off a torn pronator tendon that ended his 2016 season Sept. 7. If Strasburg was not 100 percent, then he would not have been pitching Thursday.
Facing off against Tanner Roark's team, Strasburg tossed 23 pitches, all from the stretch as he works on staying quick to home plate in his delivery and showed some encouraging signs to Washington pitching coach Mike Maddux.
"A little rusty, but the stuff was there," Maddux said. "Threw some nice curveballs. Changeup was first-game-of-Spring-Training type. It wasn't the one he's accustomed to throwing. But it was good to see him out there. That was the big bonus for me, that Stras went out there and competed well."
Strasburg had been given two days off in between pitching, one of the minor tweaks the Nats have made as they try to keep him healthy for the season.
• Max Scherzer is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Saturday, his first time throwing off a mound this spring as he heals from a stress fracture in his right knuckle.
"We do have the extra week this year to pace ourselves," Maddux said. "So Max, if all goes well, he'll be maybe a [Spring Training] start or two behind the other guys."
• Maddux also came away impressed with right-hander Koda Glover, who tore the labrum in his hip near the end of last season but is showing no lingering effects of the injury.
Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.