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Max Scherzer frustrated with Sports Illustrated over magazine cover

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In many cases, gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated is something to be pleased with. Unfortunately, Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Max Scherzer is less than pleased with circumstances surrounding him being on the latest issue.

A 2013 season that saw Scherzer take home the American League’s Cy Young Award put the 29-yeard-old in position for a big pay day with free agency looming next year. Negotiations with the Tigers on a long-term contract extension ceased last month when Scherzer rejected a reported six-year, $144 million extension, leaving the two sides to pick back up after the season.

When it came time for the Sports Illustrated feature, Scherzer relayed through Tigers’ media relations he didn’t want the details of his contract situation to be prominent. One look at the magazine and we can see it is.

“To be on the cover is a very special moment, but I’m also frustrated that they chose to put the contract stuff on the cover,” Scherzer said Sunday via the Detroit Free Press.

“I didn’t want it to be about that,” Scherzer said. “I’m a baseball player. I want to talk baseball. It’s frustrating when you get lied to about that.”

Through assistant managing editor Stephen Cannella, Sports Illustrated defended its decision.

“We were aware Max didn’t want to discuss his contract situation in detail, but at no time did we make any promises how we would mention it in the story or how we wouldn’t, or where we would use it, whether it would be on the cover or whether it wouldn’t.”

Given his wishes, it’s understandable for Max Scherzer to feel the way he does, since they weren’t granted. It’s probably safe to say not many would be particularly thrilled to be questioned if they made a “dumb wager” on their future.

H/T Sporting News

Vince McMahon sending Max Scherzer, Clayton Kershaw Cy Young championship belts

Vince McMahon power walkDetroit Tigers pitcher Max Scherzer and Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw took home the Cy Young Awards for their respective leagues on Thursday. Thanks to Vince McMahon, the best is yet to come.

After Scherzer and Kershaw were officially announced as winners, Major League Baseball’s official Twitter account sent out mock-ups of WWE-style championship belts with their names and achievements on them. McMahon caught wind of it and apparently like the idea, so he claims he is going to have the belts made and send them to Scherzer and Kershaw.

Just when the two aces thought their day couldn’t get any better, the WWE boss comes along and provides the “pinch me” moment. It’s a great day to be a Cy Young Award winner.

H/T The Big Lead

Max Scherzer injures ankle celebrating Tigers clinching AL Central

Year after year, I watch baseball teams celebrating their postseason berths and division crowns and wonder how more people don’t get hurt. Between champagne and beer flowing everywhere and 40-man pig piles in the middle of the field, it’s a mystery how more players don’t break bones or tear ligaments. Unfortunately for Tigers fans, their team was unable to escape its AL Central-clinching celebration without injury.

Tigers right-hander Max Scherzer will reportedly miss his final start of the season on Wednesday after tweaking his ankle during Detroit’s celebration on Monday night. Manager Jim Leyland told reporters someone stepped on Scherzer during the festivities.

“This is a slightly twisted ankle,” Leyland explained. “You know, swollen, but it doesn’t appear to be serious. But it’s obviously serious enough that he won’t pitch tomorrow.”

Scherzer had missed his previous scheduled start because of a sore right shoulder, and the plan was to have him throw five innings on Wednesday to test it out. Leyland said Scherzer felt great while throwing off of flat ground on Tuesday and that the ball was “flying out of his hand.”

While Leyland did everything he could to downplay the injury and not cause a panic, it is obviously a concern for the Tigers. Scherzer was one of the better pitchers in the AL this season, finishing with a 16-7 record and 3.82 ERA. His 228 strikeouts were third-best in the AL, so Detroit obviously needs him in the postseason.

As fellow ballplayers like this one and this one could tell Scherzer, celebration injuries are an unintended consequence that are not fun to deal with.

UPDATE: Per Hardball Talk, Scherzer apparently woke up feeling fine on Wednesday and was penciled back in for his start against the Royals. Obviously good news for Tigers fans regarding the ankle. The issue to monitor now will be how his shoulder responds.

Photo credit: John Rieger-US PRESSWIRE

The Rich Only Get Richer: Max Scherzer

Through the first month of the season, it’s pretty clear that there’s one team head-and-shoulders above everyone else: the Arizona Diamondbacks. They’ve consistently been winning at a .700 clip this year, and they’ve already had an 8-game winning streak. They lead the majors in runs scored and runs batted in when it comes to offense. As a nice complement, they also lead the majors in ERA and WHIP. So that pretty much means they have the best hitting team as well as the best pitching team in baseball. And as if having the 6-0 Brandon Webb — the clear favorite for the Cy Young at this point — isn’t enough, then having four-game winners Dan Haren and Micah Owings in the rotation is also pretty good. To make matters worse for opponents, Randy Johnson is back and mastered the Padres last time out (yeah, I know, it was San Diego, but still). So what does this all mean? The best may be yet to come: Max Scherzer has been called up.

Max Scherzer was ridiculous in Triple-A Tucson this year, going 23 innings over four starts, allowing just three runs. In a display of sheer dominance, Scherzer only walked three batters while striking out 38. He only gave up 12 hits. And Max made his Major League debut on Tuesday night in long relief of Edgar Gonzalez who got smacked around by Houston. Gonzalez allowed six runs over two and two-thirds, and Scherzer came on in relief. Max’s line: four and a third perfect innings with seven strikeouts. So Randy Johnson comes back from back surgery, Doug Davis is recovering from thyroid surgery, Webb, Haren, and Owings are dueling for the Cy Young, and on top of all this, the rest of the NL now has to worry about Max Scherzer. Pity the rest of the league, pity them.