Max Scherzer has 3,000 strikeouts, three Cy Young Awards, two no-hitters, a 20-strikeout game, a World Series championship and so much more. He's one of the greatest aces of his generation.
Here are the top moments of Scherzer's career with the D-backs, Tigers, Nationals, Dodgers and Mets, starting with the most recent.
July 22, 2022: Passing Bob Gibson
Gibson was Scherzer's idol growing up a Cardinals fan in Missouri. In Scherzer's first start for the Mets out of the 2022 All-Star break, he recorded the 3,118th strikeout of his career to pass Gibson and move into 15th place on the all-time list, a special moment for Scherzer.
"That was my dad's favorite pitcher. I'm definitely going to give that ball to him," Scherzer said after the game. "For me as a kid, growing up, [Gibson] was one of my idols. I did book reports on him left and right. I know so much of his career and what he meant to the St. Louis Cardinals organization, obviously what he meant to my dad, and to me. To pass him, that's a huge thing for me personally."
Oct. 14, 2021: Saving Game 5
In a winner-take-all Game 5 against the Giants in the NLDS, Cody Bellinger's go-ahead single in the top of the ninth inning gave the Dodgers a 2-1 lead over their rivals at Oracle Park. But they needed someone to get the final three outs. That closer? Scherzer, who finished off the Giants in the bottom of the ninth for his first career save, striking out the Wilmer Flores to send the Dodgers to the NLCS.
Sept. 12, 2021: 3,000-strikeout club
Scherzer joined one of baseball's most exclusive clubs when he became the 19th pitcher in MLB history to reach 3,000 strikeouts. And that milestone was just one part of an epic day for Mad Max.
Taking the mound for the Dodgers against the rival Padres, Scherzer nearly threw a perfect game. He went 7 1/3 perfect innings before Eric Hosmer -- also his 3,000th strikeout victim earlier in the game -- broke up the bid with a double.
On his way to strikeout No. 3,000, Scherzer also threw an immaculate inning (striking out the side on nine pitches). It was the third of his career, making Scherzer, Chris Sale and Sandy Koufax the only pitchers on record with three immaculate innings.
Aug. 4, 2021: Dodgers debut
After the Dodgers swung a blockbuster trade to land Scherzer from the Nationals at the Trade Deadline, he delivered a gem in his first game in Los Angeles. Scherzer pitched seven innings of two-run baseball with 10 strikeouts to beat the Astros in his team debut.
Oct. 30, 2019: World Series champion
Scherzer led the Nationals to their first World Series championship, and the first championship of his career, in 2019. He was the starting pitcher for the winner-take-all Game 7 against the Astros, taking the mound just three days after he was scratched from his Game 5 start due to neck spasms and gutting through five innings of two-run baseball. Scherzer's start kept the Nationals in the game until they could rally late to win it.
Scherzer was excellent throughout the Nationals' postseason run, posting a 2.40 ERA in his six appearances and winning a game apiece in the NLDS, NLCS and World Series.
Sept. 25, 2018: 300-strikeout season
Scherzer joined an exclusive single-season pitching club in 2018: 300 strikeouts. He's one of only 19 different pitchers in the modern era (since 1900) with a 300-strikeout season. Scherzer actually finished the year with exactly 300 K's, reaching the mark with a 10-strikeout performance in his final start.
2017: Third Cy Young Award
When Scherzer went 16-6 with a 2.51 ERA and a National League-leading 268 strikeouts for the Nats in 2017, he joined another short list: three-time Cy Young Award winners. Scherzer is one of only 10 pitchers who have done that, along with Roger Clemens (seven), Randy Johnson (five), Steve Carlton (four), Greg Maddux (four), Clayton Kershaw, Koufax, Pedro Martinez, Jim Palmer and Tom Seaver. Scherzer's '17 Cy also made it back-to-back awards for him.
July 11, 2017: Starts All-Star Game for NL
Scherzer has started four All-Star Games in his career now. This was his first for the NL after starting in the American League in 2013. Scherzer became the fifth pitcher to start an All-Star Game in both leagues, joining Vida Blue, Roger Clemens, Randy Johnson and Roy Halladay. He pitched a scoreless inning and struck out Aaron Judge and George Springer.
2016: Second Cy Young Award
Twenty-one pitchers have won multiple Cy Young Awards. Scherzer joined that list in his second season in Washington after leading the NL with 20 wins, leading the Majors with 284 strikeouts and posting a 2.96 ERA in 34 starts. He also became the sixth pitcher to win a Cy Young in both leagues, along with Gaylord Perry, Martinez, Johnson, Clemens and Halladay.
May 11, 2016: 20-strikeout game
Scherzer achieved one of baseball's rarest feats when he struck out 20 batters in a single game. Only five times has a pitcher had 20 K's in a regular nine-inning performance: Clemens in 1986 and '96, Kerry Wood in '98, Johnson in 2001 and Scherzer in '16. A 20-strikeout game is rarer even than a perfect game. Scherzer did it against his former team, the Tigers.
Oct. 3, 2015: Second no-hitter
In his final start of the 2015 season, Scherzer threw one of the most dominant no-hitters ever -- a 17-strikeout performance against the Mets where only one batter reached base, on an error. It was Scherzer's second career no-no and second of the year. He's one of six pitchers with multiple no-hitters in the same season, along with Roy Halladay in 2010 (including his postseason no-hitter), Nolan Ryan in 1973, Virgil Trucks in 1952, Allie Reynolds in 1951 and Johnny Vander Meer in 1938.
June 20, 2015: First no-hitter
Scherzer came as close to perfection as possible in this one but had to "settle" for his first career no-hitter. He had retired 26 in a row and was a strike away from completing the perfect game when Jose Tabata leaned his elbow into a pitch to break it up with two outs in the ninth inning. Scherzer retired the next batter, Josh Harrison, to finish off the no-no.
2013: First Cy Young Award
Scherzer truly took his place as one of the game's elite pitchers in 2013, when he won his first career Cy Young Award with the Tigers. He went 21-3, leading MLB in wins, with a 2.90 ERA and 240 strikeouts.
July 16, 2013: Starts All-Star Game for AL
This was the first of what is now eight consecutive All-Star seasons for Scherzer. He earned the start for the AL, throwing a 1-2-3 inning capped by a strikeout of Joey Votto.
2012: First 200-strikeout season
Scherzer's breakout year was the season before his first Cy Young Award. He reached the 200-strikeout mark for the first time (he's now done so in each of the last nine full seasons) and helped the Tigers reach the World Series.
April 29, 2008: MLB debut
A 23-year-old Scherzer made his Major League debut in relief for the D-backs early in the 2008 season. It was a gem -- he threw 4 1/3 perfect innings with seven strikeouts against the Astros.