Stephen Strasburg placed on DL. That can only mean that his, his kids’, and his kids’ kids’ careers are over with now.

Washington National's starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg delivers a pitch to the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning of play in their MLB National League baseball game at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, Ohio, July 21, 2010.    REUTERS/John Sommers II  (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

The Nationals had to place starter Stephen Strasburg on the 15-day disabled list (retroactive to July 22) with right shoulder stiffness according to MLB.com. Apparently the young phenom was having trouble getting loose before his scheduled start against the Braves on Tuesday and thus, the Nats decided to scratch him from the game and then place him on the DL.

Like a shark smelling blood in the water, when an injury like this happens to a young pitcher, someone in baseball always takes the opportunity to predict future problems for the player. That someone in this instance is White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper, who told MLB Network Radio on Thursday morning that Strasburg’s arm action could result in future injuries.

From the New York Post:

“I am not wishing this guy bad, but for him to be having problems right now when they are really, really watching him what are they going to see when they are trying to get 220 innings from him? He does something with his arm action that is difficult, in my mind, to pitch a whole lot of innings on.”

“It reminds me a little bit of Kerry Wood, a little bit of Mark Prior. I hope I’m wrong about this,” said Cooper, whose White Sox were held to one run over seven innings by Strasburg in his third major-league start. “When you throw with the kind of talent and force that he can throw, you can break easier than let’s say a Mark Buehrle type.”

Wow, a prediction of future complications and references to Kerry Wood and Mark Prior? You went all out, Don.

Cooper has probably forgotten more about pitching than I’ll ever know and he’s just sharing his opinion, but all of this seems a little too convenient for me. Strasburg hasn’t even been on the DL for over 24 hours and Cooper is already making national statements that he could have future problems. Shouldn’t we hold off first?

Maybe Cooper will inevitably be proven right, but we have to wait and see. Just because Strasburg is having arm problems now doesn’t mean that he’s going to have the same issues in the future, nor does it mean that this injury is a prelude to a bigger problem. We just don’t know.

The key is that the Nationals are taking the situation seriously and are proceeding with caution. Strasburg is a massive part of their future and they’re going about this injury the right way. They need to protect their investment and considering they’re not playing for a pennant right now, it makes sense that they would put him on the DL instead of taking any chances.

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