The Mariners placed outfielder Milton Bradley on the restricted list Thursday to allow him a little more time for reflection on the emotional issues that caused him to leave the clubhouse in the middle of Tuesday’s game.
Bradley is not allowed to be in uniform or travel with the team and can’t return to action for five days. The move cleared a spot on the 25-man roster for Michael Saunders, who will provide outfield depth in Bradley’s absence. Saunders, 23, was batting just .200/.293/.213 with five RBI in 80 at-bats for Triple-A Tacoma but the M’s need bodies.
Bradley, 32, is hitting .214/.313/.371 with two homers and 12 RBI through 70 at-bats this season. He asked for “help” from the Mariners on Wednesday and, according to the Tacoma News Tribune’s Ryan Divish, had his first therapy session this afternoon.
Nationals starter Max Scherzer bunted a ball into his face during batting practice on Tuesday, breaking his nose in the process. He ended up with a gnarly looking shiner around his right eye, making him appear a bit like Terminator. Scherzer still took the ball to start the second game of Wednesday night’s doubleheader against the Phillies.
Despite the injury, Scherzer was incredibly effective, limiting the Phillies to four hits and two walks across seven shutout innings, striking out 10 batters in the process. He might even have had some extra adrenaline going, as he averaged 96.2 MPH on his fastball, his highest average fastball velocity in a game since September 2012, per MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. The Nationals provided Scherzer with just one run of support, coming on a Brian Dozier solo home run off of Jake Arrieta in the second inning, but it was enough.
Wander Suero worked a scoreless top of the eighth with a pair of strikeouts. Victor Robles added a solo homer off of Pat Neshek in the bottom half. Closer Sean Doolittle took over in the ninth, working a 1-2-3 frame to give the Nats their 2-0 victory.
Over his last six starts, Scherzer now has a 0.88 ERA with a 59/8 K/BB ratio across 41 innings. He has gone six innings, struck out at least nine batters, and held the opposition to two or fewer runs in each of those six starts.