TORONTO – Texas Rangers right-hander Max Scherzer will miss the remainder of the regular season and possibly the playoffs if the team advances due to a strained muscle in his shoulder, the team announced Wednesday.
General manager Chris Young reported that an MRI performed Wednesday revealed a minor strain on the teres major muscle that did not require surgery. That came a day after Scherzer retired from his Toronto start in the sixth inning.
“In a way I was almost relieved that it wasn’t worse. No surgery is required,” Scherzer said. “When I talk to the doctors, I hope for a full recovery.”
Young said team doctor Keith Meister is optimistic the injury will fully heal with rest. Scherzer said he needed a few weeks off from pitching.
But there are only two and a half weeks left in the regular season as the Rangers attempt to advance to the playoffs for the first time since 2016.
“Unfortunately, the current schedule does not give us time to rest him and get him back pitching, especially not before the end of the regular season,” Young said.
He was then asked to comment on Scherzer’s chances of making the playoffs.
“I don’t want to rule that out at this point,” he replied. “We’ll see how the next few weeks go and how he feels. Still, it seems unlikely.”
The Rangers drafted Dominican right-hander Jonathan Hernández from Triple-A Round Rock. Young hasn’t said how they’ll fill Scherzer’s spot in the rotation, other than to suggest it will be with a guy who’s already among the 28 players that make up the roster.
Scherzer, whose 3,367 strikeouts are the most of any active pitcher, will be re-evaluated in two weeks. He finished the season with a 13-6 record and a 3.77 ERA in 27 starts for the Mets and Rangers. He collected 174 strikeouts in 152 2/3 innings.
Texas acquired the 39-year-old Scherzer, a three-time Cy Young Award winner, from the New York Mets shortly before the trade deadline. As part of the agreement, Scherzer exercised his option to extend the contract through 2024 for $43.33 million, with the majority of that to be picked up by the Mets.
“I have to listen to what my body is saying,” Scherzer said. “I’ll pitch when I can, but it looks like I won’t be able to for a while.”