WASHINGTON — Max Scherzer avoided an injury scare during his last home start after taking a triple-digit comebacker off the knee.
“When that ball hit me, my whole knee kind of went numb,” the Nationals ace recalled Wednesday during his weekly “On the Mound with Max Scherzer” segment, presented by Dulles Motors.
“I was trying to put weight on it,” Scherzer said on 106.7 The Fan. “I was able to kind of walk on it at first, but then I couldn’t, and obviously when I went down I was worried that the muscles or ligaments around that area were all going to tighten up.”
Scherzer immediately barrel-rolled off the mound before coming to a face-first stop on the Nationals Park field. After a few tense moments, and being tended to by the Nats training staff, he returned to the game as if nothing had happened.
He finished the fourth inning, and then returned in the fifth to strike out the Phillies’ side on only nine pitches, en route to a 6-5 Nationals win in the second game of a double header.
“As I realized that it actually just hit the bone and that it wasn’t broken, that I was actually okay, it was a big sigh of relief for me just to be able to catch my breath, and relax there, and realize that nothing actually was hurt,” Scherzer said. “Considering I took a shot right there, as much as it did hurt at the time, that pain was actually able to subside pretty quickly because nothing was tightening up on me.”
“When I got hit, my leg was in the air, so it just knocked me down,” he said. “You always want to get right back up and try to finish the play. Whenever you get hit by a ball, you always want to try and walk it off so nothing can tighten up.”
“I couldn’t just walk that one off,” he said. “That was going to take a couple minutes to get over that one.”