While Nationals ace Max Scherzer is taking a “year by year” approach as he nears his 14th Major League season, Scherzer isn’t eyeing retirement any time soon. “I still love everything it takes to go out there and pitch at a high level. Still love pitching as much as I ever have. I don’t feel like I’m slowing down whatsoever and I want to continue to have as long a career as possible,” Scherzer tells NBC Sports Washington’s Todd Dybas.
Whether Scherzer’s baseball future is in the District or elsewhere has yet to be determined, as Scherzer is entering the final year of his contract. Nationals GM Mike Rizzo recently stated that there hadn’t yet been any extension talks with the right-hander, and Scherzer also said he hasn’t heard anything about negotiations. Obviously, there’s plenty of time before the season for the two sides to discuss continuing what has thus far been an incredibly successful relationship, though Scherzer still sees 2021 as more unfinished business. “I still have another year left to really try and execute this contract,” Scherzer said. “That’s just kind of how I try to work. I’m not going to sit here and try to reflect upon six years when I’ve still got a year left.”
More from around the NL East…
- The Phillies’ hiring of Dave Dombrowski as their new president of baseball operations caught many around in the sport by surprise, including Dombrowski himself on some level. As Jayson Stark of The Athletic (subscription required) writes in his chronicle of Philadelphia’s front office search, “In a little more than 30 hours, Dave Dombrowski had gone from ’sorry’ to ’when do I start?’ And he’d never seen it coming.” Stark’s piece details the many ins and outs of the Phillies’ search, which a close but ultimately fruitless courtship of Twins GM Thad Levine, and Dombrowski himself twice rejecting the team’s overtures to focus on his position as part of a group attempting to bring an MLB franchise to Nashville. After Dombrowski learned that MLB was unlikely to either expand or relocate a team any time soon, he gave renewed consideration to the Phillies’ pitch and a deal came together quite quickly.
- On paper, “the match seemed perfect” between J.T. Realmuto and the Mets to line up on a free agent deal, The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal writes. However, “the Mets wanted to move more quickly than Realmuto,” so New York pivoted away from Realmuto to sign the next-best catcher on the market in James McCann. Time will tell if either side might have erred, whether it was the Mets by being too aggressive or Realmuto by not being aggressive enough.
- The Braves officially announced their 2021 coaching staff, including the additions of Bobby Magallanes as a second assistant hitting coach and the hiring of Drew French as the new bullpen coach. Magallanes has been with Atlanta’s organization for the last two seasons, first working as a hitting coach at the Triple-A level in 2019 and then as an assistant hitting instructor in 2020, which already included a lot of work with the MLB roster. French has spent the past five seasons with the Astros, working in such roles as Triple-A pitching coach in 2019 and instructing at Houston’s alternate training site last season.