Strasburg returns, leaves early with elbow issue

Washington Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg felt a pinch in the back of his elbow and was forced to make an early exit in his first start since returning from the disabled list Wednesday night.

Strasburg will have an MRI on Thursday, Nationals manager Dusty Baker said. Baker said Strasburg had felt a pinch but didn’t elaborate on the severity of his injury.

Strasburg gave up one run and two hits in 2 1/3 innings with four strikeouts and no walks, throwing 42 pitches. He exited with a 1-0 lead.

Before going on the disabled list, Strasburg allowed 19 runs over his final three starts, including nine over 1 2/3 innings in a loss to Colorado his last time out. In his first 17 starts, he was 13-0 with a 2.51 ERA.

It was Strasburg’s second stint on the disabled list this season. The right-hander missed 17 games in June with an upper back strain.

“As far as how long he’s going to go tonight, we don’t really know what his endurance level is, but we encourage him again to be honest with us,” Nats manager Dusty Baker said before the game.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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