Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Max Scherzer loses no-hit bid against Cubs in seventh inning of NLDS Game 3

4 Comments

Update (6:31 PM ET): Ben Zobrist broke up the no-hitter with a double to left-center field with one out in the bottom of the seventh. That brought Baker out to the mound with Scherzer at 98 pitches. After a 30-second chat with Scherzer, he brought in lefty Sammy Solis to face the left-handed-hitting Kyle Schwarber. Cubs manager Joe Maddon then had the right-handed-hitting Albert Almora, Jr. pinch-hit for Schwarber.

*

So much for that hamstring injury. The Nationals pushed back ace Max Scherzer‘s debut in the NLDS until Game 3 because of a “tweaked” hamstring he sustained in his final start of the regular season. He was aiming for around 100 pitches on Monday.

Scherzer has held the Cubs hitless through six innings thus far in Game 3 of the NLDS at Wrigley Field. He’s issued three walks and struck out six on 90 pitches.

The Nationals gave Scherzer the lead in the top half of the sixth. Cubs left fielder Kyle Schwarber failed to catch a fly ball, then booted it away trying to reclaim it in left field, allowing Daniel Murphy to get to third base with two outs. Ryan Zimmerman then launched a two-out double to right field to plate Murphy. The Cubs, by the way, have committed four errors in this contest.

Don Larsen (1956) and Roy Halladay (2010) are the only pitchers to throw a no-hitter in the postseason — Larsen’s was a perfect game. We’ll keep you updated as Scherzer attempts to navigate the final three innings. Given that he’s already at 90 pitches, manager Dusty Baker may not want to risk the right-hander’s health by asking more out of him than he’s physically capable of giving.

Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name

Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images
14 Comments

The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly and Zach Buchanan report that Diamondbacks starter Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name as recently as December. The fake name is Mason Saunders. Bumgarner explains that “Mason” is shortened from “Madison,” while “Saunders” is his wife’s maiden name.

Bumgarner — err, Saunders — and one of his rodeo partners, Jaxson Tucker, won $26,560 in a team-roping rodeo competition in December. The Rancho Rio Arena posted a picture of the pair on Facebook, highlighting that they roped four steers in 31.36 seconds.

As Baggarly and Buchanan point out, Bumgarner also pointed out in a rodeo competition last March, just a couple days before pitching in a Cactus League game versus the Athletics, back when he was still with the Giants.

Bumgarner suffered bruised ribs and a left shoulder AC sprain in 2017 when he got into a dirt bike accident. Given that, Bumgarner’s latest extracurricular activity does raise a concern for the Diamondbacks, who inked him to a five-year, $85 million contract two months ago. Baggarly and Buchanan asked Bumgarner about such a concern. Bumgarner referred them to the club’s managing partner Ken Kendrick. Kendrick directed them to GM Mike Hazen. Hazen declined speaking about “specific contract language.” For what it’s worth, Bumgarner says he primarily uses his right hand to rope.

The jig is up on Bumgarner’s hobby. He jokingly said to The Athletic’s pair, “I’m nervous about this interview right now.” He added, “I’m upset with both you two.”