Right-hander Erick Fedde will take over in place of Strasbourg. It is not known if Strasbourg will require a passage on the injured list. Martinez described it as “day to day,” according to Athletic’s Britt Ghiroli.
It would have been Strasbourg’s first significant appearance since Game 6 of the 2019 World Series. He has since signed a 7-year, $ 245 million contract with the Nationals to keep him in town for the foreseeable future.
Strasbourg, 32, would have made his debut in the season. Last season, he made 33 starts and notched a 3.32 ERA (138 ERA +) and a strikeout ratio of 4.48.
Fedde, 27, has made 35 career big-league appearances, including 26 starts. He compiled an ERA of 5.39 (83 ERA +) and a strike-to-walk ratio of 1.62 in those matches. His arsenal includes a low lead from the 90s and a curve ball that has missed bats on nearly a third of the swings made against him. He was expected to fill a bullpen role this season.
The Nationals have now received some unexpected news ahead of their two games this year. Juan Soto tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday. Soto missed the first game and it is not known when he will join the team.
In other news, the Nationals are reportedly set to sign free-agent utility player Josh Harrison ahead of Saturday night’s game. Harrison was released by the Philadelphia Phillies earlier this summer after failing in their 30-man lineup. He spent last season with the Detroit Tigers but was limited to 36 games due to injury.