Max Scherzer Reiterated Expectation To Start For Dodgers In Potential NLCS Game 7
Max Scherzer, 2021 NLCS
Brett Davis/USA TODAY Sports

After staving off elimination against the Atlanta Braves, the Los Angeles Dodgers originally hoped Max Scherzer would be able to start in a must-win Game 6 of the National League Championship Series at Truist Park.

Those plans never came to fruition as lingering arm fatigue prevented the right-hander from taking the mound. It was the byproduct of Scherzer being used to close out the San Francisco Giants in Game 5 of the NL Division Series on just two days’ rest.

The relief appearance previously cost the 37-year-old an opportunity to make his scheduled start in the NLCS opener against the Braves. He returned to the mound for what would be his final appearance of the postseason in Game 2 and failed to get out of the fifth inning.

Despite the subpar outing and lingering arm trouble, Scherzer was confident he would be able to start in a potential winner-take-all Game 7. He reiterated that stance in a recent interview with Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times:

“I needed time. And you don’t have time in the playoffs, and so every day mattered in that point in time. So getting pushed back to Game 7, I would’ve been able to take the ball. Like I said, I don’t know how much I would’ve been able to give, but I would’ve been in a much better position than throwing in Game 6. 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.”

With Scherzer unable to take the mound in Game 6, the Dodgers turned to Walker Buehler on short rest for the second time in the postseason. He was tabbed with the decisive loss after allowing four runs on seven hits in just four innings pitched.

Scherzer went on to sign a record-breaking three-year contract with the New York Mets, and during his introductory press conference, blamed his dead arm on the Dodgers’ efforts to monitor his workload.

Scherzer doesn’t blame Dodgers for arm trouble

After intimating the Dodgers’ pitching plans were behind his dead arm and the feeling of it being “overcooked,” Scherzer clarified that he didn’t intend to blame the organization.

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