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- Start him later in the season and miss the playoffs by a few wins = complaints that they started him too late- Start him later in the season, make the playoffs and then have the playoff starts be the ones where the extra month of pitching led right up to him having struggles due to fatigue = complaints that they didn't start him late enough.Without a crystal ball, those arguments are just plain silly. Same thing goes for shutting him down mid season and starting him back up, which is arguably worse. And the notion that you can simply skip a couple of starts or, even more laughable, pull him out of games earlier to preserve innings, perpetuates the myth that innings pitched was the magic number. That's ass backwards. The number of innings acrued was simply going to logically coincide with some level of ultimate stress on the arm - a huge percentage of which comes from throwing pitches that are never counted in game stats.The only legitimate argument is simply whether you shut him down at all or pitch him regardless. There are legitimate arguments on both sides of that one. The Nats simply went with the desire to abide by the recommended recovery plan, instead of going with the idea that despite that recommended plan, there is nothing definitive and it is better to roll the dice, the future is now, yada yada . . . To me, those two sides have legitimate arguments with no right answer. It is a decision you make based upon priorities. The idea that there was some magic regimen of late starting and rests that would knowingly bring about both a successful playoff berth and a healthy Strasburg in top form for the duration is fool hardy.
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