Max Scherzer clarifies comments on National League DH
In a series of Twitter screenshots from his phone, Scherzer elaborated on a conversation he had with CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman, who wrote a story on Sunday with the headline, "In Wainwright wake, Nats' Scherzer advocates for DH in both leagues." St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright suffered a season-ending Achilles injury while batting in Saturday's game against the Milwaukee Brewers.
In Heyman's story, Scherzer was quoted as saying, "I wouldn't be opposed" to all of baseball adopting the designated hitter. Scherzer said he enjoys batting, and added, "If you look at it from the macro side, who'd people rather see hit -- Big Papi or me? ... Who would people rather see, a real hitter hitting home runs or a pitcher swinging a wet newspaper? Both leagues need to be on the same set of rules."
In his clarification on Tuesday, Scherzer said some of his comments were taken out of context in Heyman's story. Below are Scherzer's full comments, written as he tweeted them.
"In a recent article written by Jon Heyman, there were comments taken out of context that I would like to clarify. First and foremost I value what my colleagues and fellow players think of me and it appears my casual and in-jest comments were not portrayed properly. I was having a casual conversation with Jon discussing Adam Wainright's injury and the subject of the DH and pitchers hitting came up. John asked me if the National League had the DH would it have made a difference in regards to Adam's injury and I responded "no" as I believed it to be a freak injury and had nothing to do with him actually hitting.
"John then asked me how I liked hitting in the NL since I made the switch over from the AL and I told John that I love to hit and enjoyed all of it (bunting, hitting, running the bases, etc.) to help our team any way to win a game. He asked if I thought the NL should have the DL just like the AL and my response was simply an opinion that I thought at some point it would be good for both leagues to have the same rules.
"As for my comment about who would people rather see hit and me swinging a wet newspaper, anyone who knows me knows I am an outgoing, fun and jokester kind of a guy. I was making an attempt to be funny with those comments and nothing more. And therein lies the problem...I respect their need for the media to do their job however in some instances what they write portrays a player in a negative light and only provides one particular argument or side.
"I did not seek out to be the spokesperson for the NL adopting the DL. As all of my fellow players can relate to, this is simply a case of a reporter taking a casual comment and turning it into a story with a specific agenda, therefore it was important to me to set the record straight and let the full context of the conversation be heard."
After beginning his major-league career with two seasons in the National League with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Scherzer spent five in the American League with the Detroit Tigers. He signed with the Nationals as a free agent in the off-season.
Scherzer is a .159 hitter (14-for-88) with three doubles and four RBI.
- Mike Fiammetta