The Texas Rangers are in the midst of a postseason push. Max Scherzer, the three-time Cy Young Award-winning pitcher with 214 career big league wins, has been ruled out for the remainder of the regular season.
MLB.com, the official website of Major League Baseball, reported on Thursday (July 14) that “Scherzer will not pitch the remainder of the season due to a right arm muscle (pronator teres) strain. His availability for the postseason is unknown.” On the same day, Texas placed Schuerzer on the disabled list (IL).
Earlier in the day, Scherzer started the second game of a four-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays of the 2023 Major League Baseball (MLB) at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Scherzer was locked in a tight pitching battle with Hyun-jin Ryu early in the game, allowing just one run on three hits with one walk and two strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings to earn his 13th win of the season. He showed off his power against a Toronto lineup that has a lot of power. It was a flawless performance, both in terms of content and outcome.
After working out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the first inning, Scherzer faced a double and a walk in the bottom of the second, but got Kevin Kiermaier to ground out to end the threat. In the bottom of the third, he got out of the inning without allowing a run on back-to-back singles after the first batter, Tyler Heinemann, singled, and the top of the fourth was similarly uneventful, save for a double by Davis Schneider in the second.
Schuerzer cruised into the bottom of the fifth, retiring the side in order to move one step closer to his 13th win of the season, and the offense responded with three runs in the top of the fourth on a Robbie Grossman double and a Jonah Heim sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth.
But then something happened that no one saw coming. In the bottom of the sixth inning, with his team up 3-0, Scherzer grounded out to leadoff hitter George Springer and was in the process of facing Beau Bisset when he suddenly felt ill. The team trainer and pitching coach Mike Maddux rushed to the mound.
Determined to keep going through the inning, Scherzer tried to warm up with practice pitches, but his body wouldn’t cooperate. After several checks, it was determined that he could no longer throw the ball and a pitching change was made, with Schuerzer handing the mound over to his second pitcher, Jose Leclerc, and walking to the dugout. Local media outlets later reported that the problem was in the muscle that connects the shoulder to the arm, and Scherzer underwent a full medical examination.
“We definitely have some bad news today,” said Texas head coach Chris Young, who announced Schuerzer’s injury ahead of Thursday’s game against Toronto. We’re sorry to hear about his injury, and it’s something we didn’t want to happen,” Young said. “We still have a shot at the postseason, and I’m very proud of the team,” Young said, leaving the door open for fall baseball. “At this point, it’s unlikely that Scherzer will pitch in the postseason, but we’ll continue to monitor his progress. Surgery is not expected to be necessary,” he said of Scherzer’s condition.
“On the other side, I’m relieved that (the injury) isn’t worse and I’m not having surgery,” Scherzer said, adding, “Based on the doctors’ diagnosis, it looks like he’s going to make a full recovery.”
Scherzer, who broke into the big leagues in 2008, reached double-digit wins in 10 straight seasons starting in 2010, and reached the 20-win plateau in 2013 and 2016. With the exception of 2020, which was played in a shortened season, 10 wins were the norm every year until last year.
Scherzer has also had a storied career, winning the American League Cy Young Award in 2013 and the National League Cy Young Award in 2016 and 2017. In his big league career, he has 457 games, 2834⅔ innings, 214 wins, 108 losses, a 3.15 ERA, and a whopping 3367 strikeouts.
Scherzer, who already has 13 wins this season, is 13-6 with a 3.77 ERA in 27 games and 152⅔ innings pitched, and has been a consistent performer since coming to Texas from the New York Mets in a trade last July.
Scherzer has shown flashes of his prime and could be a valuable addition to the team for the rest of the season and into the postseason. With his experience in the short game, his teammates were expected to benefit from his presence. That’s why this injury is so disappointing, not only for the player, but also for the team.
The loss of the ace is even more painful as the team is still in the thick of the race. Texas has won five straight games, including a 10-0 shutout of Toronto on April 14, to clinch the second wild-card spot in the American League. With 15 games remaining, the Rangers still have three wins to show for their efforts, but with a postseason berth far from assured, the Rangers have to start thinking about the next 17 games.안전놀이터
Without Schwarzer, the Rangers will have to make do with four starters – Nathan Ivoldi, Jordan Montgomery, John Gray, and Dane Dunning – and a backup starter for the time being. With names like Martin Perez, Andrew Heaney, and Cody Bradford being thrown around, it remains to be seen who will fill Scherzer’s shoes as every game becomes crucial.