Did you hear Stephen Strasburg's coming to the majors next week?! If not, welcome back from underneath that rock. How were the accommodations?
Anyway, Strasburg is making his debut June 8, which means the Nationals will have to make a spot in their starting rotation for him somehow.
Right now, the swap for Strasburg looks like an easy choice - J.D. Martin, who was called up as a spot starter for Olsen, is lined up on the same day as Strasburg. It'd be very easy to have him make the start for Syracuse against Louisville on June 8, bringing Strasburg up without throwing anyone off schedule. Because of the Nationals' off-day next Monday, John Lannan actually would be on track to pitch the 8th on an extra day's rest, but Martin would be on normal rest to pitch at Syracuse. And with Lannan's elbow, it doesn't hurt to give him an extra day, anyway.
But let's say the Nationals don't want to bump Martin, though that seems the likely choice. Luis Atilano could be lifted if the Nationals bumped everyone in the majors back a day and sent Atilano to the minors for a June 10 or 11 start. Stammen is trickier, since everyone would have to be bumped back two days and his scheduled June 12 start in Cleveland would be given to someone else. And with the June 7 off-day already giving the pitchers an extra day, additional rotation monkeying doesn't seem necessary. Martin still makes too much sense, and Atilano and Stammen had earned spots over him, anyway.
When Scott Olsen comes back, though, one of those pitchers will have to go. They both had strong starts their last time out, so it gives the Nationals the luxury of a little extra time with Olsen. He's only playing catch right now, and if the team keeps him doing that for a few more days, they're obviously in no hurry.
So my guess is come June 8, the rotation looks like this: Strasburg, Lannan, Livan Hernandez, Atilano and Stammen. And when you bring Olsen back, you can swap Atilano or Stammen for him and keep the Nationals' two lefties (Olsen and Lannan) split up.
P.S.: June 8 is sold out online, though the Nationals are giving season-ticketholders a chance to buy seats for this "once in a lifetime event," as the team's letter stated this morning, and there are, of course, the 2,500 grandstand seats that go on the day of every game at the box office. Tickets are fetching between $63 and $2,000 on StubHub. The site has an ad saying "See Stephen Strasburg June 8." Gee, guys, could you find a graphic of a right-handed pitcher, at least?
P.P.S.: Though I guessed June 8 back here, I, like most beat writers, also made several mentions of June 4 once a rainout pushed his schedule back. That's why it'd be exceedingly lame of me to take credit for it now. So I won't do it.