Update #3 (6:27 PM EST): It seemed like a foregone conclusion with the way Scherzer had been pitching through six innings. Scherzer was one strike away from a perfect game against the Pirates. In the ninth inning, he got Gregory Polanco to foul out to the third base side on a nice play by Anthony Rendon, Jordy Mercer to fly out to center field, then hit pinch-hitter Jose Tabata with a pitch to end his bid for a perfect game. He salvaged the no-hitter, getting Josh Harrison to fly out to end the game, completing the no-hitter.
Scherzer threw 105 pitches, 80 for strikes. He recorded 10 strikeouts in the outing, his sixth double-digit strikeout start of the season. Scherzer joins Chris Heston as pitchers to have thrown no-hitters this season. Jordan Zimmermann was the last National to throw a no-hitter, who accomplished the feat on the final day of the regular season last year.
Update #2 (6:11 PM EST): Scherzer remains perfect through eight innings. He got Jung Ho Kang to pop out, struck out Francisco Cervelli, and got Pedro Alvarez to ground into the shift, with second baseman Danny Espinosa making a very nice play to get the out with inches to spare. Scherzer has 10 strikeouts on the afternoon. He one more inning left to complete baseball’s 24th perfect game.
Update (5:55 PM EST): He’s perfect through seven innings. Scherzer carved through the top of the Pirates’ batting order, getting Josh Harrison to fly out weakly, then striking out Starling Marte and Andrew McCutchen. Stay tuned for the final two innings as Scherzer attempts to polish off his perfect game.
We could have some history in the making this afternoon at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., as Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer is perfect through six innings against the Pirates.
Scherzer has struck out seven batters thus far while throwing 50 out of 67 pitches for strikes. He has only had two three-ball counts out of the 18 batters he has faced. He’s cruising.
The Nationals currently lead 1-0 on a solo home run from Bryce Harper. Stay tuned to see if Scherzer can finish it off.