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Dodgers: Max Scherzer Worried About ‘Jeopardizing’ His Career in Potential NLCS Game 6 Start



It’s certainly rehashing old news that most have moved on from by now, but Max Scherzer was recently asked to respond to the comments he made at his New York Mets signing press conference where he put a fair amount of blame on the Dodgers for his inability to get it done in October.

As you may recall, Scherzer said back in December that his “overcooked arm” issue stemmed from a lowered pitch count while the LA coaching staff was trying to “keep him fresh” for the postseason. A simple look at Mad Max’s Baseball-Reference page will tell you that his story didn’t add up. 

Dodgers insider Dave Vassegh hit on it here in a series of tweets.

At any rate, with more time to think about his response, Scherzer took time with Jorge Castillo of the LA Times to look back on his comments. With that, he clarified something for fans who questioned his intent in the postseason after he asked to not pitch game 6 of the NLCS

“It wasn’t about a contract situation. It’s literally my arm’s health. When you can’t throw, you can’t throw.”

Of course, last October, Scherzer appeared in just 4 games, starting the Wild Card game, game 3 of the NLDS and relieving in game 5, then starting game 2 of the NLCS. He did that over a span of 12 days. A countless number of times, the right-hander has pointed to his workload with the Nationals during the club’s 2019 World Series run. He pitched on short rest twice that postseason and was hoping he could get similar results with the Dodgers last postseason.

Instead, he hit a point where he was worried that he could be putting his career on the line if he made that NLCS game 6 start.

“If I pitch in that game, I blow out and I could be out for a year and jeopardize my career … Throwing in Game 6, I would’ve been rolling the dice on sustaining a substantial injury. There’s no ifs, ands or buts about that.”

By now, it’s all really a moot point. The Dodgers lost that game 6 started by Walker Buehler, Max Scherzer left to sign with the Mets, and now it’s January 2022 and LA is looking to build for another title run. But, if you were still wondering why Scherzer didn’t take the ball in that game, it wasn’t about a contract.

Max Scherzer Sets Record Straight on Dead Arm With Dodgers, Is That Why He Didn’t Re-Sign With LA?

NEXT: Mookie Betts Reveals His Two Baseball Idols

Written by Clint Pasillas

Clint is the lead editor of Dodgers Nation, and a host and analyst on Dodgers Nation's own Blue Heaven podcast live stream.

He's been writing, blogging, and podcasting Dodgers since about 2008. He was there for Nomar, Greg Maddux, and Blake DeWitt, and he'll be there for Walker Buehler, Alex Verdugo, Dustin May, and any Dodgers of the future.

He's also a sandwich enthusiast, a consummate athlete, and a friend.

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  1. Alot of people do not understand what having 4 outings in a 12 day period does to your arm and body. To pitch each and every time you have to warm up and cool down and recover; Scherzer was not able to do that many hi stress outings without having a “dead arm”. For someone who is used to pitching every 5th day that is over use. I have seen coaches do this at all levels and without the necessary build up it is a disaster waiting to happen. And Scherzer is the only one who knows “his” arm and it’s strength or lack there of; believe me he wanted to pitch!

    • did you see what max said? he said he had dead arm because the Dodgers didn’t let him pitch enough. Max walked for the big bucks – good riddance

  2. Let’s be honest he would’ve tanked that game worse than Buehler in the condition he was in. Furthermore if we somehow won the series he would’ve continued being useless in the WS and we have to watch Houston celebrate against us

  3. As I said in another article here, where I stated Sherzer concluded the Dodgers weren’t going to win the WS and bailed to protect his next contract and had no intention of signing with LA.

    • He’s right Houston would’ve embarrassed this franchise permanently with an easy series win discrediting the cheating cries about 2017

  4. the dodgers werent too smart handling their pitching staff or their hitters. they shouldve seen that max was 37 and the load he endured in 2019 and how he went down in 2020 and backed off more on the load long before the playoffs rolled around. and not chased the giants especially after roberts handed frisco those 2 games. maxs statements are probably tied into the image he wants to present as superman for the big contract. i wouldve ignored the bravado and benched him his last reg season start or two, as i wrote to the dodgers and warned them in august and september to not chase frisco for the division and rest the entire team. but they felt they are too good to listen to mealthough im a superior competitor. and it cost max and buehler both or either one the cy young award. and they continued to drive the team into the ground like total idiots. theyre like a freight train out of control at this point.

  5. Mike, your first sentence tells it all regarding the last 6 seasons. And we are all grateful that you wrote to the team with your strategy for late season. Was that included in the managerial application and what sort of a response did you get ?

    • Yes they responded that Drrrrrrr had it under control, and that Drrrrr would make sure Mckinney got plenty of at bats, Pujols would sit and he would play Will Smith at 1st base, keep Beaty down in the Minors and Neuse at 2nd, and bat Bellinger clean up while in a 2 – 54 hot streak….No worries, they had it covered.

  6. Did Scherzer ever hear of giving it “the old college try?” If you can’t do it after trying, you can’t do it. No harm no foul, and you are looked upon as a courageous ‘team player.”
    But, Scherzer is a selfish player and didn’t give a crap about the team, the city, and his teammates.

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