Washington Nationals Reaction: Max Scherzer just keeps piling on strikeouts
Washington Nationals’ right-hander Max Scherzer earned a no-decision in his start on Saturday, but he continues to demonstrate he’s the National League Strikeout King.
The Washington Nationals needed some ninth-inning magic to win their game against the Padres yesterday afternoon. Before that, though, they received another stellar start from right-hander Max Scherzer,who has now struck out a league-leading 181 batters.
Scherzer pitched seven brilliant innings, allowing two runs on four hits while striking out 10 batters over seven innings of work. It was eighth time this year in which Scherzer has struck out 10 or more batters.
With two months to go in the season, Scherzer is on pace to strike out around 284 batters. His career high in strikeouts — which he set last season — is 276.
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Of course, strikeouts don’t tell the whole story. But for Scherzer, the fact that he leads all of baseball in that department is a testament to his dominance this season. And if you want to talk about the importance of other stats, he can play that game, too.
Scherzer’s WHIP (0.94) is second only to that of Clayton Kershaw (who could be out for the season with an injury). Scherzer is also in the NL top-3 in opponents’ batting average, innings pitched and strikeouts per nine innings.
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No matter what numbers you’re looking at, the verdict is unanimous: Max Scherzer is one of the best pitchers in the National League right now. And come September, he may very well be in the Cy Young Award conversation (though other pitchers, including his 13-1 teammate Strasburg, could have something to say about that).
For now, however, the Nationals are focused on making it back to the postseason. And if Scherzer can stay hot down the stretch, the road to October suddenly seems a little easier.