Marco Scutaro receives injection in ailing back, considered “50-50” for Opening Day

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Giants second baseman Marco Scutaro has been limited to just one game this spring due to back soreness and now there’s a chance that he could begin the season on the disabled list.

According to Alex Pavlovic of the San Jose Mercury News, Scutaro received an epidural injection in his back after he felt lingering stiffness in recent days. It was actually the second injection he has received this spring, but the first one obviously didn’t work. Giants manager Bruce Bochy hasn’t ruled him out for the start of the season, but with the clock ticking, he considers him “50-50” for Opening Day.

“This is to try to get him over the hump,” Bochy said. “He’ll be down a couple of days but the hope is that he’ll be good to go.”

Scutaro, 38, hit .297/.357/.369 with two home runs, 31 RBI, and a 34/45 K/BB ratio over 127 games last season. If he starts the season on the disabled list, Joaquin Arias will likely fill in at second base.

Max Scherzer reaches 300 strikeouts on the season

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Nationals ace Max Scherzer struck out his 300th batter of the season on Tuesday night against the Marlins. Austin Dean was the victim, swinging and missing at a 3-2 curve for the second out in the seventh inning.

Scherzer’s 2018 is the seventh 300-strikeout season since 2000. The others: Chris Sale (308; 2017 Red Sox), Clayton Kershaw (301; 2015 Dodgers), Randy Johnson (334; 2002 Diamondbacks), Curt Schilling (316; 2002 Diamondbacks), Randy Johnson (372; 2001 Diamondbacks), Randy Johnson (347; 2000 Diamondbacks). It’s the 67th 300-strikeout season dating back to 1883.

At the conclusion of the seventh, Scherzer had held the Marlins to a run on four hits with no walks and 10 strikeouts. He entered the start 17-7 with a 2.57 ERA across 213 2/3 innings. Jacob deGrom will almost certainly win the NL Cy Young Award, but Scherzer’s 2018 has been outstanding.