Max Scherzer could very easily have been the Tigers' Game One starter in the World Series. He has has been dominant in the postseason. He battled Justin Verlander strikeout for strikeout in the regular season. He simply had a fantastic year. But he also battled fatigue and injuries. So, the Detroit Tigers will use him in Game Four limiting him to just one start in the World Series.
According to Jason Beck of MLB.com, Scherzer's fatigue and his ankle injury while celebrating the Tigers' American League Central championship have left the Tigers cautious. They want him as healthy as possible each time he takes the mound in the postseason. To ensure that, they have limited him to two starts so far in the playoffs.
"Some people have asked about, 'Should he pitch in the fourth game?'" manager Jim Leyland said on Tuesday. "But because of his little bit of setbacks recently, not too recently, but with the celebration and prior to that with a little tired arm, we decided this was the best way to go."In Scherzer's two postseason starts, the 28-year old righty has posted a 0.82 ERA. He won one of the games and is a big reason why the Tigers are in the World Series. During the regular season, Scherzer had perhaps the best year of his career. In 32 starts, Scherzer was 16-7 with a 3.74 ERA. He struck out a career-high 231 batters.
Scherzer is healthy, but the Tigers don't want to take any chances. And it's a fair concern. With the 2006 season still fresh in Jim Leyland's mind, he is surely making sure he doesn't take anything for granted. Give Scherzer the ball in Game Four and hope he gives you the best outing possible. It's a good plan.