Stephen Strasburg will return to live baseball Sunday, pitching for the first time in nearly a year. But apparently the Nationals don’t want you to know much about how he does.
The Hagerstown Suns issued media guidelines for the game, saying in part, “No photography or videography on the field is permitted during the course of the game.”
And “The field must be cleared of all media members by 3:50pm in preparation of a first pitch fifteen minutes later….There will be absolutely no access to the Suns home clubhouse before, during, or after the game. Due to space constraints, there will be no access to the Municipal Stadium press box without permission from the Hagerstown Suns Media Relations Department.”
But if members of the media are good little boys and girls and promise to stay in line at a designated place, they will be led into an inner sanctum and allowed a ten-minute audience with the anointed future Hall of Famer after he has undergone 45 minutes to an hour of treatment.
From the Hagerstown Suns:
Media Guidelines for Washington Nationals RHP Stephen Strasburg
First Rehabilitation Appearance for Strasburg on Sunday at Municipal Stadium
Hagerstown, MD—Washington Nationals RHP Stephen Strasburg, making his first rehabilitation start with the Hagerstown Suns on Sunday at 4:05pm after undergoing Tommy John Surgery on September 3, 2010, will not be made available to credentialed media members during the pre-game.
There will be absolutely no access to the Suns home clubhouse before, during, or after the game. Due to space constraints, there will be no access to the Municipal Stadium press box without permission from the Hagerstown Suns Media Relations Department.
No photography or videography on the field is permitted during the course of the game.
Media will be allowed through the gates at Municipal Stadium beginning at 1:45pm. All media credentials can be picked up at will-call with proof of media affiliation.
No one-on-one interview requests for Stephen Strasburg will be honored per the Washington Nationals.
The field must be cleared of all media members by 3:50pm in preparation of a first pitch fifteen minutes later.
Strasburg is slated to throw the first two innings against the Greensboro Grasshoppers on Sunday afternoon. Once Strasburg leaves the game, he will undergo treatment for roughly 45 minutes to one hour. Following the conclusion of his post-game work, Strasburg will be made available in a group press conference in the Hagerstown Suns Press Room inside the front office.
Once Strasburg leaves the mound after the top of the 2nd inning, media members are asked to form a group next to the first base line field suite. The line should extend behind the first base general admission stands in preparation for an escort to the Strasburg Press Conference.
About 15 minutes after Strasburg exits the game, a Suns Media Relations representative will take the media into the press room to await Strasburg’s arrival. All media are asked to reduce the amount of equipment brought into the press room due to limitations in the interest of accommodating every member of the media.
Stephen Strasburg will answer questions about his rehabilitation appearance for approximately ten minutes. No further media inquiries will be honored following the completion of the Strasburg press conference.
Suns players, Manager, Brian Daubach, Pitching Coach, Chris Michalak, and Hagerstown Suns staff will be made available to the media following the conclusion of the game.
Suns training staff members will not be made available for comment at any time on Sunday.
These policies are subject to change without advanced notice to credentialed members of the media.
Stephen Strasburg returns to mound in Hagerstown Sunday
WASHINGTON (AP) — Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg is expected to throw Sunday in the minor leagues, a significant step in his recovery from elbow surgery.
Nationals manager Davey Johnson said Wednesday that Strasburg will throw an inning or two for Class A Hagerstown, which will be hosting Greensboro. It will be the right-hander's first appearance in a game since he underwent reconstructive elbow surgery last September.
Johnson says Strasburg's appearance Sunday is contingent upon him emerging from a side session Thursday without problems. He hopes to have Strasburg back with the Nationals by September.
The first overall pick in the 2009 amateur draft, Strasburg went 5-3 with a 2.91 ERA last season. He had 92 strikeouts in 68 innings before hurting his arm in an Aug. 21 game against Philadelphia.