Dodgers' Max Scherzer won't start NLCS Game 6 vs. Braves as scheduled, per report

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Dodgers' Max Scherzer won't start NLCS Game 6 vs. Braves as scheduled, per report
© Provided by CBS Sports

Game 6 of the National League Championship Series is set for Saturday night at 8:08 p.m. ET in Atlanta’s Truist Park. The pitching matchup is scheduled to be Max Scherzer for the Dodgers against Ian Anderson for the Braves. On the heels of Scherzer saying his arm was “dead” after Game 2 of this series, however, there’s a report from the Los Angeles Times that Scherzer won’t be starting after all. Here’s more:

Max Scherzer was scheduled to speak to the media via Zoom soon after the Dodgers landed at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport on Friday night. News conferences are customary for starting pitchers the day before scheduled playoff outings and Scherzer has been slated to start Game 6 of the National League Championship Series against the Atlanta Braves on Saturday.

But Scherzer didn’t address reporters. The team touched down at around 8:15 p.m. EDT and canceled the session minutes later because Scherzer isn’t going to start Saturday after all, according to two people with knowledge of the situation.

Scherzer had two bad starts to end the regular season. He was pretty good but didn’t have his command in the NL Wild Card Game, leading to him not making it through the fifth inning. He was pretty well dominant in his NLDS start and then closed out Game 5 with a one-inning outing. He seemed compromised in Game 2 of this series, as he again didn’t make it out of the fifth inning, and then made the comments after the game about how he had dead arm. 

If this report ends up being true, it’s not entirely shocking (I expressed concern Friday morning). 

Without Scherzer starting, the Dodgers’ pitching situation is pretty murky. Walker Buehler would only be on three days’ rest. Julio Urías would be on two. The only other option, really, is a bullpen game. They just did one in Game 5, too, and lost Joe Kelly to injury in the process. David Price has been activated in Kelly’s spot and he’s seems like a reasonable candidate to start, but he hasn’t thrown more than 30 pitches since August. Tony Gonsolin has been a starter for much of his time with the Dodgers, but he’s been used strictly in relief this postseason. The best bet is it’ll be one of those two starting the game. 

Unfortunately for the Dodgers, though, it doesn’t sound like the starter will be Scherzer. 

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