New York Mets co-ace Max Scherzer exited Saturday night’s start against the Washington Nationals after five innings and 67 pitches because he was “feeling fatigued on his left side,” the team announced. Scherzer missed close to seven weeks with a left oblique strain earlier this season.
Prior to exiting the game, Scherzer allowed just one run on a Luis García solo homer in five innings. He allowed three hits and a walk, and he struck out five. That’s another way of saying Scherzer looked like Scherzer. There was no indication he was “feeling fatigued on his left side” until he was surprisingly removed from the game.
“(Scherzer) probably could have continued to pitch but just didn’t feel it was a good idea,” manager Buck Showalter told reporters, including The Athletic, after the game. The Mets are hopeful he can make his next start. An off-day Thursday means Scherzer’s next start currently lines up for next Friday against the Miami Marlins.
At this point in the season another oblique strain could put Scherzer’s postseason availability in jeopardy, so of course the Mets were smart to remove him from Saturday’s game and play it safe. The club is still battling for the NL East title, though they are all but assured a postseason spot, and they need Scherzer in October.
Carlos Carrasco will come off the injured list to start Sunday’s game. He missed the last three weeks with an oblique strain of his own. The Mets are also without righty Tylor Megill. He’s been out since June 16 with a shoulder issue. Megill made his first minor-league rehab appearance Thursday and is expected to return as a reliever.
Despite Saturday’s loss, the Mets are 85-49 this season and have the second best record in the National League. Only the juggernaut Los Angeles Dodgers are better (90-41). The Mets are two games up on the defending World Series champion Atlanta Braves in the NL East.