Out of postseason contention, the stakes weren't very high for the Washington Nationals on Thursday, but they always seem to be elevated for their starter, Stephen Strasburg, who is searching for stability in his career.
After lugging a 6.55 ERA at the end of May, Strasburg lowered his ERA to 3.46 on Thursday with a scoreless six innings in the Nationals' 3-0 win over the Atlanta Braves.
Strasburg reflected on what has been an injury-filled rollercoaster of a season for him.
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"I learned a lot about myself this year," he said. "I'm just going to continue to try getting better every single day."
With his performance on Thursday, the 27-year-old righty wrapped up the season with four consecutive outings in which he went six or more innings and surrendered one or zero earned runs.
Strasburg is now 54-37 with a 3.09 ERA and 901 strikeouts in 776 2/3 innings over six seasons.
"I learned to be more aware of my thoughts out there," Strasburg reflected. "There are times in the game when you can kind of let your focus slip just for a split second. And I made it a point to not let that happen, to just focus on each pitch and just let everything I've got go on that individual pitch and turn the page."