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Cardinals will pursue Josh Donaldson this offseason

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Bob Nightengale reports that the Cardinals “are expected to strongly pursue” Josh Donaldson this offseason.

Donaldson is not a free agent, of course. He’s still arbitration eligible. The Blue Jays, though, dangled him at the trade deadline and may be willing to shop him again this offseason. Or maybe not: they’re letting Jose Bautista walk, obviously, but there has yet to be any suggestion that they plan to blow things up.

For his part, Donaldson has had another strong season in 2017, batting .272/.389/.564 with 33 homers and 77 RBI. He’s been particularly strong in the second half, hitting 24 of those homers and posting an OPS of 1.009 in 65 games. He missed about a month and a half between mid-April and late May with a strained calf.

Everyone needs a bat — the Cardinals particularly – and if Donaldson is available, he’d be a nice guy to get. I just sorta doubt the Jays will make him available.

Max Scherzer (hamstring) leaves start vs. Mets after just 1 inning

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WASHINGTON — Three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer left his start for the Nationals against the New York Mets after just 27 pitches Wednesday night due to a hamstring injury.

He was replaced in the top of the second by Erick Fedde.

Scherzer was not as sharp as usual at the outset Wednesday, going 2-0 counts against each of New York’s initial two batters, walking one and giving up a single to the other.

The Mets eventually went ahead in the first on Dominic Smith‘s sacrifice fly.

Scherzer entered the game with an 0-1 record and 2.84 ERA this season.