Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg has been voted National League Pitcher of the Month for the month of April. In five April starts, Strasburg went 2-0 with a 1.13 ERA and an N.L.-best 34 strikeouts while walking just six. The right-hander submitted quality starts in each of his five outings last month, allowing only four earned runs in 32.0 innings pitched. Facing the N.L. West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday, April 28th, Strasburg scattered five hits and allowed only a single run while fanning nine in 7.0 innings of work at Dodger Stadium. Despite the strong outing, Strasburg did not earn a decision as the Nats dropped the game, 4-3, in extra innings. It was Strasburg’s second consecutive no-decision after holding the Marlins scoreless over 6.0 innings with six strikeouts on April 21st at Nationals Park in a game the Nationals would eventually win, 3-2 in 10 innings. Strasburg earned his two April victories in consecutive starts on April 11th at New York and April 16th vs. Houston. At New York, the 23-year-old fanned nine Mets hitters and allowed only two base hits en route to a 4-0 victory at Citi Field. On April 5th at Chicago, the flame-thrower did not garner a decision despite dazzling in his first Major League Opening Day start, allowing one run with five strikeouts over 7.0 innings of work in Washington’s 2-1 victory at Wrigley Field. In his first full season since recovering from “Tommy John” surgery, the top overall pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft has the second-lowest ERA among qualifying Major League pitchers and is tied for third (with teammate Gio Gonzalez) among N.L. strikeout leaders. This is the first career monthly award for the San Diego State product.
Other pitchers receiving votes included Strasburg’s Nationals teammate Jordan Zimmermann (1-1, 1.33 ERA, 16 SO, 27.0 IP, 2 BB); Lance Lynn (4-0, 1.33 ERA, 24 SO, 27.0 IP, 6 BB, 16 H) and Kyle Lohse (4-0, 1.62 ERA, 21 SO, 6 BB, 33.1 IP) of the St. Louis Cardinals; Arizona’s Joe Saunders (2-1, 0.90 ERA, 18 SO, 7 BB, 30.0 IP, CG, SHO); San Francisco’s Madison Bumgarner (4-1, 2.53 ERA, 17 SO, 32.0 IP); Ted Lilly (2-1, 0.90 ERA, 11 SO, 20.0 IP) of the Dodgers; and Cincinnati’s Johnny Cueto (3-0, 1.13 ERA, 22 SO, 6 BB, 32.1 IP).
The National League Pitcher of the Month, Stephen Strasburg, will receive a specially designed trophy, suitably
engraved, to commemorate his performance.