Nationals star Max scherzer dropped out of Friday night’s start against the Giants in the first inning after a visit from the coach. He seemed to be dealing with a lower body problem, according to Todd dybas from NBC Sports Washington.
Washington cannot afford a prolonged absence from Scherzer. At 25-33, the Nationals’ hopes of staying in the postseason are already waning. Washington is already without Stephen strasburg, who has been on the disabled list since June 2 due to a nervous irritation to his neck. Patrick Corbin has had a terrible season, while Joe ross has numbers below average. Jon lester other Erick fedde they have been decent but unspectacular. (Fedde has missed the past three weeks after testing positive for COVID-19, but is expected to return this weekend, Dybas Notes.)
Scherzer has shown his usual incredible personality in 2021. He entered the game on Friday night with an excellent 2.22 ERA in 77 innings. Scherzer is short on bats at an elite level, with a 36.1% strikeout rate ranking fifth among qualified pitchers. He just goes on Jacob deGrom other Gerrit cole on the strikeout / walk rate differential (30.9 percentage points), while his SIERA of 2.65 is the fourth lowest in the sport (behind deGrom, Cole and Joe musgrove).
That level of dominance has surely already inspired teams to call in the Nationals to assess Scherzer’s availability before the July 30 trade deadline. The Nats have not traditionally been inclined to move star players, but with their playoff odds lowered to 2.7% (through FanGraphs projections), there is a case where they should hear offers about the impending free agent. (Scherzer has full non-trade rights as a player with 10 years of MLB service, five in a row with his current team.) Even approaching his 37th birthday, Scherzer will be one of the most coveted arms on the market this winter. MLBTR’s Tim Dierkes recently placed him in 10th place in his Free Agent Power Rankings 2021-22.