Max Scherzer vs. Astros hitters — round 2
It was a battle for Max Scherzer in Game 1, but battle he did as he held the Houston Astros scoreless after the first inning and earned the win.
From the beginning, it was clear that the gameplan for the Astros hitters was to work the pitch count for Scherzer and get into the Nationals bullpen.
That strategy worked as Scherzer only last 5 innings, but the Nationals were able to get a big enough lead before he left so that the bullpen was just able to hang on.
Scherzer’s final line in Game 1 was: 5 IP, 5 H, 3 BB, 2 ER, 7 K, and 112 pitches.
I would imagine the Astros will have that same kind of approach in Game 5, and I think they’ll take that Game 1 line again knowing Cole should have a better game.
We’ll see if Scherzer changes things up and maybe pounds the strike zone a little more early in the count. And it’s very possible he was just struggling with command issues in Game 1, in which case he’ll need to have better command this time around.
Yuli Gurriel had a couple of hits off Scherzer in Game 1, including a 2 RBI double in the first inning.
George Springer worked two walks against Max in that game with some really long at-bats.
Yordan Alvarez had a walk and a single against him, but he hasn’t been able to play in games three and four because he’s the DH. We’ll see if the Astros can work him into the lineup for Game 5.