Battling tightness in his right forearm, Washington Nationals flamethrower Stephen Strasburg now needs to be benched

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Unlike last September, Stephen Strasburg now needs the pine.

Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson revealed flamethrower Stephen Strasburg is battling tightness in his right forearm following the team’s 3-2 loss to the Braves on Monday night at Turner Field in Atlanta.

The 24-year-old Strasburg (1-4, 3.16 ERA), finally throwing without asinine restrictions, is taking medication and being evaluated by Washington’s doctors.

Considering the 2012 All-Star and Silver Slugger Award winner has already visited the disabled list and undergone Tommy John Surgery, Strasburg needs to be skipped in the rotation.

Called by Sports Illustrated the “most hyped and closely watched pitching prospect in the history of baseball,” Strasburg has compiled a 22-14 record with 341 strikeouts and a 2.94 ERA since debuting with Washington (13-13) in June 2010.

Despite being entirely healthy during a rare playoff run, bush league Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo shutdown the first overall selection in the 2009 draft last September after 159 1/3 innings on the hill.

Wrongly forced to sit in the dugout like a clown’s pocket, Strasburg watched the Nationals fold to the St. Louis Cardinals in October’s NLDS.

Pampering an athlete is the easiest way to cause injury and Rizzo stunted the youngster’s development with unnecessary coddling in the autumn.

However, less than a month into the season, Rizzo must shelve Strasburg for a start.

With 136 games remaining, Stephen Strasburg should be nowhere near a mound in early May.

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