CHICAGO -- Stephen Strasburg will throw a bullpen session Tuesday in Washington before making his second rehab start on Friday for Class A Potomac at Pfitzner Stadium.
The young phenom had his first rehab start Sunday for Class A Hagerstown, pitching 1 2/3 innings while allowing a run with three strikeouts.
Strasburg is hoping to pitch in his first Major League game of the season in September. The last time he pitched in a big league game was on Aug. 21, 2010, against the Phillies before undergoing Tommy John surgery.
Morse thriving at the dish in everyday role
CHICAGO -- Don't tell Nationals first baseman Michael Morse that he is third in the National League in hitting with a .324 batting average entering Monday's action against the Cubs.
Morse will tell you that he doesn't look at his stats and will not look at them until after the season is over.
"I've gone through so much in my career," Morse said. "At no point will I be satisfied with what I'm doing. I'm always trying to be better. I'm always out to prove myself. I've been like that since Day One. ... I'm not going to change that."
Morse has been an above average hitter ever since the Nationals acquired his services from the Mariners in a trade for outfielder Ryan Langerhans on June 28, 2009. That year, Morse was arguably Washington's best pinch-hitter, going 6-for-19 (.353).
Last year, Morse found himself in a platoon situation in the outfield and managed to hit 15 home runs with 41 RBIs. Right now Morse is having his best season to date. Besides the high batting average, Morse leads the Nationals in home runs (19) and RBIs (67).
"I just try to keep my approach, stay within myself," Morse said. "I'm getting an opportunity, which is great. It takes the pressure off me and it puts the pressure on the pitcher and everybody else."
Asked if Morse could win the batting title, manager Davey Johnson said, "It's very seldom you see somebody with his kind of power win a batting title. I'm not saying that it can't be done. But he hits the ball to all fields and he has power to all fields, so there is definitely a chance he could hit for a good average and drive in runs."
Prospect Taylor receiving high marks
CHICAGO -- An opposing scout said Nationals prospect Michael Taylor reminds him of Orioles center fielder Adam Jones.
While Nationals bench coach Pat Corrales predicted that Taylor will be in the big leagues in 2 1/2 years, the opposing scout believes Taylor will make it to the Majors sooner than that.
Taylor, who is playing for Class A Hagerstown, is hitting .331 with eight home runs and 29 RBIs since the All-Star break.
The Nationals are looking at Taylor as their center fielder of the future.
Johnson sticking with Livan in rotation
CHICAGO -- Nationals right-hander Livan Hernandez has allowed 25 earned runs in his last 36 1/3 innings.
Despite his struggles, manager Davey Johnson is not thinking about taking Hernandez out of the rotation in favor of Minor League prospects such as Brad Peacock and Tom Milone.
Johnson believes that Hernandez is 100 percent healthy, despite allowing his share of runs.
"Sometimes, he gets beat up a little when he's not real sharp. When he is sharp, he is as good as it comes," Johnson said.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.