Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer has been scratched from Sunday’s start against the Philadelphia Phillies due to back soreness, manager Davey Martinez told reporters on Friday.
The three-time Cy Young Award winner underwent an MRI exam, and Martinez said it came back negative. The right-hander experienced soreness in his middle back after his last outing on July 6 against the Kansas City Royals.
Martinez said Scherzer — who is 7-0 with a 0.84 ERA over his past nine starts — would have his start pushed back a few days.
Meanwhile, Washington placed left-hander Jonny Venters on the 10-day injured list with a shoulder strain, and right-hander Kyle McGowin was called up to fill his bullpen spot.
—Former major league pitcher Dwight Gooden was arrested in New Jersey in early June for cocaine possession, according to multiple reports.
Gooden was pulled over by the Holmdel Police Department on June 7 when he was traveling too slow and failing to maintain his lane on the highway. During the stop, police found “two small green zip-lock style plastic baggies containing suspected cocaine,” according to the criminal complaint filed by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.
Gooden was charged with third-degree possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is scheduled to appear in court on July 23.
—The Los Angeles Dodgers activated outfielder A.J. Pollock from the 60-day injured list following a right arm infection, and traded left-hander Adam McCreery and catcher Josh Thole to the cross-town Los Angeles Angels in order to facilitate the move.
By trading McCreery, the Dodgers were able to open room on the 40-man roster. Both players, who were in the minor leagues, were moved for cash considerations.
Pollock, 31, was signed to a four-year, $55 million deal this past offseason after outfielders Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig were traded to the Cincinnati Reds. He played in just 28 games at the start of the season, though, after a scratch near his right elbow became infected and required hospitalization.
—St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright was scratched from his start against the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks due to back spasms.
Wainright began having spasms on Wednesday, according to manager Mike Shildt. Right-hander Daniel Ponce de Leon replaced Wainwright as the starter against Arizona.
Shildt said Wainwright wouldn’t miss a turn and could potentially start Sunday’s finale of the three-game series.
—The Philadelphia Phillies placed All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto on paternity leave and selected the contract of catcher Rob Brantly from Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
Realmuto, 28, is batting .273 with 10 home runs and 42 RBIs in his first season with the Phillies after he was acquired in a trade with the Miami Marlins in February. He was 0-for-2 in Tuesday’s All-Star Game, his second consecutive appearance in the contest.
Brantly, 29, was batting .306 at Lehigh Valley with three home runs and 18 RBIs in 53 games.
—Wilmer Font’s run with the New York Mets lasted two months after the team designated the right-hander for assignment.
Font, 29, who was acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays in a May trade, was 1-2 for his National League club, with a 4.94 ERA in 15 appearances (three starts). He was 1-0 with a 5.79 ERA in 10 appearances for the Rays earlier this season.
—The rapid decline of right-hander Junichi Tazawa continued, as the Chicago Cubs released the veteran from their Triple-A Iowa roster.
The 33-year old had a 4.00 ERA over 19 appearances and 18 innings for the Cubs’ top minor league affiliate. Tazawa was a solid contributor to the Boston Red Sox for six seasons, but never could live up to the two-year, $12 million deal he signed with the Miami Marlins before the 2017 season.
—Cincinnati Reds left-hander Wandy Peralta was reinstated from the 10-day injured list.
Peralta, who was out because of a right hip flexor strain, is 0-1 with a 5.96 ERA in 28 relief appearances this season. He has allowed five homers in 22 2/3 innings. In 166 career relief appearances over four seasons, the 27-year old is 5-7 with a 4.89 ERA.
—The Kansas City Royals made a speedy roster adjustment, as outfielder Terrance Gore was designated for assignment.
Gore, 28, played in just 37 games for the Royals this season going 14-for-51 (.275). Utilized primarily for his base-stealing abilities and outfield play, Gore was 13-for-18 in stolen base attempts in his limited duties this season.
—The Minnesota Twins reinstated right-hander Blake Parker from the paternity list, one week after he left the team to be with his wife Jordan.
In a corresponding move, the Twins optioned left-hander Devin Smeltzer to Triple-A Rochester ahead of Friday’s game against the Indians in Cleveland.
—Field Level Media