Max Scherzer of the New York Mets has struck again.
After being limited in his warm-up pitches due to the pitch-clock rule, he made his displeasure known to the umpires.
Scherzer started a home game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citi Field on Aug. 2 and pitched seven strong innings, striking out nine and allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits.
The Mets won 4-2 and Scherzer earned the win. With the win, Scherzer improved to 5-2 with four consecutive starts of one earned run or less since March 15 against the Washington Nationals, lowering his ERA to 3.20 after it spiked into the five-run range.
In nine games this season, he has struck out 48 batters in 47⅔ innings with a 1.09 WHIP and a .220 batting average, slowly looking more like the highest-paid ($43.33 million) big leaguer.
Scherzer gave up two runs in the first inning, but was able to keep them off the board. After giving up a single to Trey Turner and a walk to Bryce Harper in the top of the first, a throw from catcher Francisco Alvarez to third on a double steal allowed Turner to score, and a sacrifice fly by third baseman Nick Castellanos later in the inning put him down 2-0.
But Scherzer was able to get out of the inning without any further trouble, overwhelming the Phillies’ hitters. Meanwhile, the Mets rallied to take a 4-2 lead on Jeff McNeil’s RBI single in the third, Mark Canha’s homer to left-center in the fourth, and Mark Bientos’ sacrifice fly in the sixth.
Mark Canha celebrates with Brandon Nimmo after hitting a two-run home run in the fourth inning. AFP
It was just before the top of the fifth inning that Scherzer became enraged. Pitchclock rules allow a pitcher to throw up to eight practice pitches between innings and no more than 30 seconds into an inning. After throwing seven pitches, Scherzer was about to throw another with less than 30 seconds remaining when reliever Tripp Gibson stopped him.
With his arms outstretched, Schuerzer approached the referee and began to make a loud appeal. Gibson explained the rules to him, but Scherzer’s expression was one of disbelief.
After the game, Scherzer said, “Obviously, you’re supposed to throw eight pitches in practice. I said, ‘Can I throw the eighth, can I do my routine?’ And they said no because of the pitch clock. It was very frustrating.”
Scherzer’s lack of practice pitches was compounded by the fact that he came out late to put on his catcher’s gear after Alvarez was the last out in the bottom of the fourth inning. “I’m doing my normal routine,” Scherzer said. Why should we have our game interrupted and our routine broken by an umpire when it’s not my fault?” Gibson said there was nothing he could do about it. “If I had thrown the other one, the MLB office would have held him accountable,” he said.
In the end, Schuerzer was publicly calling out the absurdity of the rule, not Gibson’s defense.
“How much slower is one more pitch in that situation? One second? Umpires should be able to use their discretion in that situation. I don’t know why we have to be so picky and shove a clock in everyone’s face to save a few seconds,” he complained.안전놀이터
Interestingly enough, despite all the excitement, Scherzer retired three batters in the top of the fifth inning on 10 pitches.
This is the second time this season that Scherzer has run into trouble with his pitches. On April 20 against the Los Angeles Dodgers, he was ejected and suspended for 10 games for having a foreign substance on his glove, which he vehemently protested, saying it was just rosin and sweat that made it sticky and that he didn’t use a foreign substance.