Strasburg Signs

I have it on good authority that Stephen Strasburg has agreed to a $15.67M deal

Now Aaron Fitt has confirmed 4 years $15.67M. This means that Strasburg has had his first three non-arbitration years bought out, the years where the team can set his salary. What is still to be determined is whether year 1 of the deal is August/September 2009. If that is the case, then Strasburg will have three years of arbitration.

That is a great deal for both Strasburg and the Nationals. Strasburg exceeds the previous reord bonus and the Nationals don’t pay the rumored $20 million

Official release is out

The Washington Nationals today agreed to terms on a professional contract with San Diego State University right-handed pitcher Stephen Strasburg, the first-overall selection in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft. Nationals President Stan Kasten and Assistant General Manager and Vice President of Baseball Operations Mike Rizzo made the joint announcement.

Strasburg—who stands 6-foot-4, 220 lbs and hails from San Diego—went 13-1 with a 1.32 ERA (16 ER/109.0 IP) in 15 starts as a junior for the Aztecs. Known for a strong blend of velocity and control, Strasburg fanned an NCAA-best 195 in 109.0 innings as a junior, or 16.1 K’s per 9.0 innings (tops in NCAA), en route to a 10.3/1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Strasburg did not issue more than two walks in any game this season, and walked one or fewer batters in 10 of 15 starting assignments.

The 2009 recipent of both the Golden Spikes Award and the Dick Howser Trophy, Strasburg posted 13 double-digit strikeout totals in 2009, and he worked scoreless ball seven times in 15 starts. His regular season and conference-tournament efforts—San Diego State went 14-0 when he pitched—were largely responsible for the Aztecs securing their first NCAA Regional berth since 1991.

In three collegiate seasons, Strasburg went 22-7 with seven saves and a 1.59 ERA (43 ER/243.1 IP) in 52 games for San Diego State. He was San Diego State’s closer as a freshman and their top starter each of the last two seasons. In three seasons at SDSU, he was twice named Mountain West Conference Pitcher of the Year, and in 2007, he was named MWC Co-Freshman of the Year.

Strasburg’s baseball experiences extend far beyond the college level, however, as last summer he pitched for Team USA in the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. By doing so, he became the first collegiate member of Team USA since professional players were permitted in the Olympics in 2000.

His two-start stint—during which he posted a 2.45 ERA—in the Olympic tournament, coupled with his performance last summer with Team USA’s undefeated (24-0) National (collegiate) Team, made Strasburg the recipient of the 2008 Richard W. “Dick” Case Award as Team USA’s Athlete of the Year.

  1. #1 by Facekdr - August 18th, 2009 at 00:06

    Lerners are cheap! seriously, good dealing Ted

  2. #2 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:07


    He is a steal at that price!

  3. #3 by HB3 - August 18th, 2009 at 00:07

    Praise Jeebus!!!

  4. #4 by Brian H - August 18th, 2009 at 00:08

    Hallelujah. Good price for us, good deal for SS. Awesome. This is the commitment we’ve been waiting for from the franchise. Thank you.

  5. #5 by John - August 18th, 2009 at 00:08

    Hope you are right…nice scoop if so…well done all around

  6. #6 by Section 204 Row H Seat 7 - August 18th, 2009 at 00:08

    Hurah!! Now we close in second or third place in next year’s draft! Harper Smarper.

  7. #7 by John O’Connor - August 18th, 2009 at 00:08

    At that price, we should have taken two.

  8. #8 by Gavin B - August 18th, 2009 at 00:08


    Can you break this down as far as how a 4 year deal works for this?

  9. #9 by Brian Oliver - August 18th, 2009 at 00:09

    Gavin – That will come in time

  10. #10 by catocony - August 18th, 2009 at 00:09

    Sounds like a Major League deal. Too bad, I always think of J.D. Drew and Todd Van Poppel and other losers. But, not too bad, he has four years to pan out.

  11. #11 by FloresFan - August 18th, 2009 at 00:10

    Beautiful. Welcome to Washington DC, Stephen.

  12. #12 by Dick - August 18th, 2009 at 00:11

    Strasburg and Karns, not a bad days work!

  13. #13 by John O’Connor - August 18th, 2009 at 00:12

    I don’t credit anything until Ted Roosevelt gives me an update on Facebook.

    A four-year deal means they bought out a year of arbitration if SS is in the majors all of next year. I assume the deal has a salary for that fourth year that’s not included in the $15.67M bonus, right?

  14. #14 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:13

    I’m actually kind of disappointed now that Ackley signed, would have made a nice “out” option if we don’t get #1 or if Harper turns out to be “not all that” reports on his latest performance show he might in fact be human (despite all reports to the contrary).

  15. #15 by Dougie - August 18th, 2009 at 00:13


  16. #16 by Wallyball - August 18th, 2009 at 00:13

    Brian – you scooped the TImes, Post and the MLB site. Way to go, dude.

  17. #17 by Slardifarst - August 18th, 2009 at 00:17

    Great job Brian, MLB Network finally catching up to you ;)

    Nice to get some good news – worth staying up for !

  18. #18 by wiggles - August 18th, 2009 at 00:17

    Lets go Nats, MAybe I’ll see him in hagerstown next week? LOL

  19. #19 by catocony - August 18th, 2009 at 00:17

    Nope, it’s a major league deal, so it’s a total. It’s not a minor league deal where everything is signing bonus and then they make a grand a month in the minors, major league minimum the first three years in the bigs. It’s similar to a free agent deal at this point.

    If he pans out, it’s an ok deal because he’ll be 25 and a free agent and the cash will be huge if he’s a star. Seems fairly middle of the road for both sides. Much lower risk for the Nats, but a short contract. Not as much money as Strasburg wanted, but in four years he’s a free agent.

  20. #20 by John - August 18th, 2009 at 00:20

    No he isn’t. He has to have six years of service time. His contract will be up, but the Nats will have at least two and more likely three arbitration years.

  21. #21 by Todd Boss - August 18th, 2009 at 00:21

    I like this deal. Buys out first arbitration year, averages to $3.9M per year, which is a steal on the FA market for a #2/#3 starter. It wasn’t crazy ridiculous money but workable.

    (btw catocony; i don’t think this makes him a FA at the end of the 4 year deal, just arbitration eligible. Draft rules give teams 6 years in total to college draft picks)

    Guesses on where his first professional start is? I say he trains in Florida for a while, gets a GCL start and maybe a Potomac start before getting shutdown.

  22. #22 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:22

    I don’t think he won’t be a FA after this deal, we bought out 1 year of arbitration, but he’ll still have 2 arbitration years when the deal runs out before being a FA after 6 – so a 27 yo FA pitcher.

  23. #23 by formerlylove - August 18th, 2009 at 00:24

    thanks for the hard work man you were way ahead of everyone all night. kudos!!

  24. #24 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:24

    If they option him to Harrisburg today is he eligible to play AFL this fall?

    Can’t we send one player who hasn’t pitched AA or above yet? I don’t recall the rules, but I think that is an option…

  25. #25 by Hoagie - August 18th, 2009 at 00:25

    Catocony, I don’t think that’s correct. I think the ML deal has to do with being on the 40-man roster and service time stipulations, but I don’t think there is a loophole in the MLB contract system that allows drafted players to hit free agency before their 3 years of minimum salary and 3 years of arbitration. I’m no expert, but I’m fairly confident I’m on the right track with this.

  26. #26 by John - August 18th, 2009 at 00:26

    Congrats all around…now, time to start tempering/managing expectations…

  27. #27 by RD - August 18th, 2009 at 00:30

    This is awesome, glad this part is over.

    Since no announcement, does this mean we ended up not signing Pena?

  28. #28 by BDBD - August 18th, 2009 at 00:31

    Can someone please clarify the meaning: ” A four-year deal means they bought out a year of arbitration if SS is in the majors all of next year. I assume the deal has a salary for that fourth year that’s not included in the $15.67M bonus, right? “

    What does a 4-year deal mean? So is he a “restricted” FA after that (where we get to match offers)? And does the clock not start ticking until he hits the majors? (In which case, can the Nats do like the Orioles did on Weiters and hold off on the promotion until May 31?)

    It seems the shorter contract is not good news for the Nats, as much of the value” you get with a young player is on the back-end — after he learns a lot in your system the first 1-3 years.

    Any insights?


  29. #29 by otf - August 18th, 2009 at 00:33

    I wonder if they’ll have Strasburg throw out the first pitch at one of these Rockies games…

  30. #30 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:34

    So who are the top picks to go unsigned this year?

  31. #31 by wiggles - August 18th, 2009 at 00:36

    Amazing job Brian! You out scooped everyone. Is your last name Kastens?

  32. #32 by RD - August 18th, 2009 at 00:37

    Matt Purke appears to be the highest pick.

    LeVon Washington wasanother first rounder that wasnt signed.

  33. #33 by Brian Oliver - August 18th, 2009 at 00:38

    Did Alex White sign?

  34. #34 by RD - August 18th, 2009 at 00:38

    Yes. 2.25 mill

  35. #35 by Rich - August 18th, 2009 at 00:39


    Yes, Alex White signed according to Dierkes

  36. #36 by Rich - August 18th, 2009 at 00:39

    Or rather Jim Callis

  37. #37 by Brian H - August 18th, 2009 at 00:40

    Strasburg’s Deal: “Major league deal, $7.5 million bonus, $7.6 million in salaries (including pro-rated $400,000 salary for remainder of 2009), $15.1 million total guaranteed. Also various incentives based on big league award voting.” per BA, Jim Callis

  38. #38 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:41

    How much was Prior’s signing bonus vs salary?

  39. #39 by estuartj - August 18th, 2009 at 00:43

    From the release;

    “The Nationals feel strongly that Strasburg can make an immediate impact in their rotation, maybe joining the team’s Major League roster sometime in September.”

    Maybe GCL or VT and then a few junk innings with the big league club before AFL?

  40. #40 by RD - August 18th, 2009 at 00:48

    Doubt he pitches in the Arizona Fall LEague.

    He pitched just under 100 innings a year ago, then 50 plus in international competition, then over 100 this year. Hell tack on another 25 or so this year probably.

    Give his arm a rest and prepare for next year without that extra stress IMO.

  41. #41 by Hoagie - August 18th, 2009 at 00:52

    Hope he doesn’t pitch in the majors. That would totally screw over my plan to grab him with the 1st overall pick in my fantasy keeper draft next year =P

  42. #42 by Brian - August 18th, 2009 at 02:20

    Congrats. As far as I am able to tell you broke the story, beat BA by a minute.

(will not be published)