Max Scherzer says he’ll be ready for the start of the regular season

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Nationals ace Max Scherzer, dealing with a stress fracture in his right ring finger, told the media he will be ready for the start of the regular season, Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post reports. “I’m gonna do it,” Scherzer said.

Manager Dusty Baker said, “He’s a little bit behind but not as far behind as it looked like he was going to be at the beginning. He’s back on pace I think.”

Scherzer, 32, is the defending National League Cy Young Award winner. He went 20-7 with a 2.96 ERA and a 284/56 K/BB ratio in 228 1/3 innings last season, helping the Nationals return to the postseason.

Scherzer would be the Nationals’ Opening Day starter if he’s healthy. If he is not healthy enough, Stephen Strasburg would likely get the honor.