Strasburg Watch-The Countdown

He signs! read about it here

12:00 A.M Time’s up.

Let’s wait and see.

11:52 P.M 0 hours and 8 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

Final countdown:


11:45 P.M 0 hours and 15 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

It’s time…all we can do is wait to see what news will come shortly after midnight. Cross your fingers for good news, whatever that may be to you. 

11:10 P.M 0 hours and 50 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

The Washington Times’ Mark Zuckerman chimes in with ESPN moments ago.

11:00 P.M 1 hour and 00 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

One hour left. Even if there is a deal standing right now, they probably wont announce it until midnight anyways. Stay tuned.


9:35 P.M 2 hours and 25 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

In Pete McElroy’s article for MASN, he says he is sitting and waiting with a handful of other reporters in the Nationals front office at Nats Park.

He said:

“While sitting here in the press box, ESPN’s Peter Gammons said that all of the Top 10 picks have signed except for Strasburg, even though they haven’t been announced just yet.

I guess Scott Boras, Strasburg’s advisor, now can give the Nationals his undivided attention since he also represents six other first-rounders.”

Check it out: Federal Baseball is also doing a countdown to Midnight. 


7:30 P.M Monday – 4 hours and 30 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

Bill Ladson from MLB.COM and ALL NATS ALL THE TIME talked with Nationals first basemen Adam Dunn about the Strasburg situation.

adam-dunn“I’m on the fence about it, because the organization is doing everything it possibly can, from what I hear, to sign him and not embarrass him or the organization,” first baseman Adam Dunn said. “I heard that they already offered him a record contract. How much more does he need?

“It’s very frustrating for me, and I can imagine it’s frustrating for everybody in here. I can understand how frustrating it is for ownership. I wish they would hurry up and get it done.”


6:40 P.M Monday- 5 hours and 20 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

Regarding  Strasburg’s development, and his threat of sitting out a year, Stan Kasten had this to say:

“It really would be a mistake for him to put his career off for another year. We outlined for him a fairly safe, conservative development plan, because we never want to rush anyone. But let’s face it, if he signs with us and gets working out next week and pitches in the Fall League well and then in spring training … he could be up here in the major leagues as soon as opening day in 2010.”

4:20 P.M Monday- 7 Hours and 40 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

Twitter be damned. Sports Illustrated’s Jon Heyman tweeted an hour ago that the Nationals offer to Strasburg was only $12.5 million, not the $17 million dollar figure we heard earlier.


4 :15 P.M Monday – 7 hours and 45 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

The only update in the news right now is that Stephen Strasburg updated his twitter:

2556700_bigger“Strasburg37:  back on twitter finally…huge day ahead of me, hopefully we can get something done today!”

That’s encouraging, for what its worth. Speaking of encouraging, Nats fans seem to be pretty optimistic that a deal will get done. Three Nationals news sources have polls up asking the basic question, will Strasburg be signed?

Federal Baseball’s poll, with 93 responding: 56% Yes, 43% no.

Nationals Journal poll, with 1203 responding: 62% Yes, 37 % no.

The Nats Blog poll, with 60 responding: 36.2% no, 19 % “God knows”, and 31% yes.

Leave it to me to mess it up with a third option. Overall however its clear that Nats fans are for the most part, relatively confident in the Nationals front office.


2:10 P.M Monday – 9 Hours and 50 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

Not much going on right now, I have a feeling we’re in the same position as the Nationals front office, just waiting it out.

Lets take a look around Nats Town:

“The Best Post-Strasburg Sign,” (DC Sports Bog)

“Boras Cares about Game-Changer, not Strasburg” (Nationals Pride)

“The New Era Of The New Deal” (Nats 320)

“Stratsburgeddon,” (Nationals Enquirer)


12:00 P.M Monday – 12 Hours and 00 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

Check out ESPN’s Pedro Gomez’s feature on Strasburg at draft time in June:

At the 12 hour mark there is very little new news on the Strasburg situation. My best guess is this is one, because Scott Boras wants it to go down to the deadline, and two, because he is handling his four other unsigned first round picks.

Baseball Tonight spoke about Strasburg last night in their Baseball Tonight Minute. Former Yankees and Rangers manager Buck Showalter said he should, “take the slot money and go play” and that this type of situation, “will make the draft obsolete in a few years.”

As we know, Strasburg has already been offered well above slot money with $17 million.

ESPN Analyst Buster Onley said that his source close to Strasburg said that if he gets a fair offer the kid wants to pitch and he wants to sign.

Unfortunately embedding is disabled for this video, you can view it here.


10:30 A.M Monday- 13 Hours and 30 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

 San Diego State’s television station Interviews Strasburg during the year:


I recently wrote a column basically summing up the decision that has to be made between Strasburg, Boras, and the Nationals. I posted it in the, “Eyes on the Farm,” section so the Strasburg Watch could remain atop the blog.

Here’s a Preview:

“It comes down to tomorrow.

Tomorrow is when one of two things will happen. Either Stephen Strasburg signs and the Major League Baseball draft is changed forever, or he doesn’t, and people will be labeled.

Scott Boras will be labeled as the greediest man on earth. Some may say he already has that title secured, but an agent who refuses a contract that is nearly 60 percent larger than the previous record one is unconscionable.

Stephen Strasburg will be labeled as a sell out, a kid with no heart for the game, and will be ostracized by many players for at least a good part of his early career.

Stan Kasten, the Lerner’s, and the Washington Nationals will be labeled as nearly failures. They will lose as much respect as a last place team can when they blow away a once in a lifetime chance to sign a savior.

The problem is that all sides have a case…. “ (READ THE REST)

Check it Out: The Jamie Mottram from Mister Irrelevant and Duk’ from Big League Stew both provide their top Stephen Strasburg links for the day, both include The Nats Blog. 

9:00 A.M Monday – 14 hours and 00 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

John Taylor of the Washington Times pointed out that there are 14 unsigned players from the first round as of this morning, and that Boras commands six of them.

Boras players unsigned:

adeal-withboras1_bddNo. 1 pick Steven Strasburg, Nationals: We all know the deal here
No. 2 pick Dustin Ackley, Mariners: Boras is looking for about $9.5 million saying if it weren’t for Strasburg, Ackley would be the number one pick in the draft
No. 3 Pick Donovan Tate, Padres: Having his way with the Padres by looming over them his full ride to North Carolina for football if he wants it.
No. 9 Jacob Turner, Tigers: Also threatening to go to North Carolina, but to pitch
No. 13 Grant Green, A’s: Was projected to be a top 5 pick at the start of the year but had an off season, still wants top 5 money.
No. 30 LeVon Washington, Rays: Has less leverage than the other players, but could force a deal as the Rays are afraid of losing similar type player Carl Crawford

Take a look at the six top players to ever receive a signing bonus of $5 million or more:

1B-Mark Teixeira –All Star
OF-J.D Drew –All Star
C- Joe Mauer – All Star, Batting Title
SP- Josh Beckett –All Star, World Series MVP
SP-David Price – Just Reached Majors
SP-Rick Porcello – Just Reached Majors
SP-Mark Prior – All Star, Arm fell off


10:40 P.M Sunday – 25 hours and 20 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg

St. Louis Post- Dispatch reporter Rick Hummel recently interviewed Hall of Fame outfielder and current head coach of San Diego State University (Strasburg’s college team).

Gwynn said:

“I think the kid wants to play, having been around him three years. But this is one I thought was going to go to the last minute anyway. In my heart, I just feel like they’re going to find a way to get it done. The Nationals have said they want to make him the highest-paid draft pick. Hopefully, come Monday night, he’s got a signed contract and he can start making San Diego State look good and coach Gwynn look good.”

You’ve got to love a coach that will talk in the third person. It’s comforting to know that someone who understands the game both on the field and off the field has confidence not only in the ability but also in the character of a kid we’re about to possibly invest a fortune in. 

Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports breaks down Scott Boras’ reasoning in his article analyzing the deadline.

He says that Boras is focusing on J.D Drew’s $7 million bonus in 1998, which came when baseball’s gross revenues were $ 2 billion. Boras then compares that to Teixeira’s bonus (10.8 million in 2001) which came when revenues were at $3.5 billion. Today revenues stand at $6.5 billion.

Brown points out Kasten’s comment from this weekend where he said, “if this is more about changing the whole way an industry does business, then we won’t be able to reach a deal.”

Clearly, one side will have to give in if a deal is to take place.

Check it out: Dan Steinberg of DC Sports Bog writes about the MASN broadcasters outrage over the deal, he transcribes the conversation between Dibble and Carpenter. 

7:45 P.M Sunday – 28 hours 15 minutes left to sign Stephen Strasburg


Roch Kubatko from MASN reported this afternoon in his article, “Fit to be tied,” that sources close to the negotiations say that the record breaking offer which Nats president Stan Kasten alluded to last night was for $17 million. That contract, if signed, would shatter the previous record $10.5 million contract signed by Mark Prior in 2001.

Chico Harlan from the Washington Post cited an anonymous source who said the Nationals must increase their already record setting offer to Stephen Strasburg:

“Washington’s current offer has been on the table since the team’s ownership group, along with president Stan Kasten and acting general manager Mike Rizzo, traveled to California last week to meet with the 21-year-old pitcher. The fact that Strasburg hasn’t since agreed to a deal, the source said, ‘should tell you enough.”

Check it out: Biz of Baseball wrote an excellent piece analyzing Strasburgs potential value and how his potential contract (their estimate of $30 million) would compare to other players at his level. 

(Editors note: We will be covering the Stradburg situation from now until the deadline tomorrow night at midnight. Check back as we will have up to the minute coverage, much like our Draft Day coverage)