Which pitchers could the Pittsburgh Pirates face in a Wild Card game?
By Tyler Waite
Aug 4, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer (31) throws to the Arizona Diamondbacks during the second inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Max Scherzer – Washington Nationals
For a good portion of this season, Max Scherzer was arguably having the best year of any starter in the majors. Right now, he leads all Nationals’ starters in ERA (2.31) and strikeouts (185), and he led the National League in ERA for a while until Zack Greinke went on his ridiculous scoreless streak. Oh, and he had a no-hitter/near-perfect game against the Pirates this year, in case you forgot or tried to erase that from your memory.
Scherzer would easily be the Nationals’ go-to Wild Card arm, hands down. The rest of the Nats’ rotation has under-performed this season to say the least, but Scherzer has shined and is in the midst of potentially his best season to date. However, when he faced the Pirates this season, he had two opposite outings. His first was the aforementioned no-hitter, but in his second contest, the Pirates tagged him for five runs on seven hits, thanks to three home runs. That was the only time all year that Scherzer gave up more than two home runs in an outing. It was also only the second time he gave up more than four runs in an outing.
So, the Pirates have shown that they can beat Scherzer. But they’ve also shown that they can be completely shut down by him. Which pitcher would show up in a postseason game? I’d lean towards the great Scherzer we’ve seen for most of this season.
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