Troubling news here for the second-place Tigers.
Max Scherzer, who has been one of the best pitchers in baseball over the past few months, was removed from his start Tuesday night against the A’s because of right shoulder fatigue. An MRI has already been scheduled, indicating that the Tigers medical staff believes the matter might be serious.
Scherzer yielded one earned run in two innings before making his early exit, fanning four. Those results included, he has a 3.78 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and 224/57 K/BB ratio through 178 2/3 innings pitched this season.
Detroit entered play Tuesday trailing the White Sox by three games in the American League Central.
UPDATE, 9:59 PM: According to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, the MRI ruled out structural damage. Scherzer won’t throw for several days but he did not suffer a major injury.
Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal has not had a good postseason. Entering Monday night’s NLCS Game 3, he was batting .111/.238/.278 in 21 trips to the plate across the NLDS and the first two games of the NLCS.
Defense has also been an issue for Grandal. In Game 1 of the NLCS, Grandal was on the hook for two passed balls. In the sixth inning of Game 3 Monday night, he couldn’t corral a curve in the dirt, which allowed Travis Shaw to score the Brewers’ second run of the night. Starter Walker Buehler was charged with a wild pitch. In the eighth, with Ryan Braun on first base and Shaw at the plate, Grandal again couldn’t corral a pitch in the dirt, allowing Braun to move to second base. Fortunately for the Dodgers, Alex Wood was able to escape the inning with no damage.
Manager Dave Roberts said that Austin Barnes, not Grandal, will start behind the plate for Game 4 on Tuesday night, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. That comes as no surprise at all. When Grandal struck out with the bases loaded in the ninth inning, Dodger fans regaled him with boos.
Barnes will be an upgrade defensively, but he’s lacking with the bat. He had an 0-for-3 performance in Game 2, though with an RBI, bringing his career slash line in the playoffs to .200/.281/.300 across 57 plate appearances. During the regular season, his career 100 adjusted OPS is a fair bit behind Grandal’s 115. Roberts is trading offense for defense in Game 4. Rich Hill will get the start opposite the Brewers’ Gio González.