Inbox: Strasburg's durability a concern?

Inbox: Strasburg's durability a concern?

Should we start being concerned about the durability and toughness of right-hander Stephen Strasburg? It seems every week or so he is being scratched for some reason or another?
-- Kerm S., Gettysburg, Pa.

We'll see when Strasburg goes to Spring Training. If he is still not 100 percent by February, then I would be concerned. The Strasburg situation reminds me of what Jose Vidro went through in Montreal.

When Vidro hurt his knee in 2003, it was believed that he didn't need surgery, but he came to Spring Training the next year and was still hurting. Vidro ended up having surgery in August of '04.

Now that they have locked up the No. 1 pick in the First-Year Player Draft for the second successive year, are the Nationals hesitant to spend a lot of money for Bryce Harper?
-- Jack T., Winter Park, Fla.

I don't think money has anything to do with this. General manager Mike Rizzo already said that it's not a guarantee that Harper would be the first pick. Rizzo indicated that there are better players out there. We'll see what happens when the Nationals select their first pick in the 2010 Draft.

Will left-hander Sean Burnett get a chance to be in the starting rotation?
-- Jim M., Chattanooga, Tenn.

No. I asked Burnett this question last summer, and he said he preferred being a reliever. "I'm happy with what I'm doing right now," he said. "I don't know if I want to start for the right reasons. I don't know if my arm would hold up to starting. I've made a better adjustment [to relieving]. I know it's more pitching, but it's less work and stress. I call myself a reliever now. I'm not looking forward to starting."

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Whatever happened to former pitching coach Randy St. Claire? Did he land on his feet somewhere in the Majors? How is he doing? I miss St. Claire. I thought he was a pretty good pitching coach.
-- James W., Warrenton, Va.

Yes, indeed. He is a good pitching coach. I learned a lot from St. Claire, who is now the Marlins' pitching coach.

Do the Nats still have interest in Tom Glavine? Is there a chance that they'll make him an offer this offseason?
-- Kevin H., Westminster, Md.

Glavine will not play for the Nationals. If anything, I could see him come in as a Spring Training instructor. I don't know if Glavine would come in and do that.

The club should go with Cristian Guzman and Willie Harris at second base. They should be splitting time 60-40 in favor of Guzman. Your thoughts?
-- Dean O., Winnipeg, Canada

I don't see that happening at all. The team considers Harris a reserve and he will spend most of his time in the outfield. He will also get playing time at second base, but not 40 percent of the time. Whoever starts at second base will play 98 percent of the time.

I am of course still an Expos fan, and I was wondering if you could tell me which players from the 2004 team are still left on the Nationals' roster?
-- Jonathan S., Montreal

Livan Hernandez played on the 2004 team, but I don't know if he is coming back to the Nationals. He is a free agent. However, Jason Bergmann and Collin Balester were drafted by the Expos and played for Washington this season.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.