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Scherzer starts fantasy football league for charity

WASHINGTON -- Nationals fans have long heard about the ultra-competitive nature of ace Max Scherzer, but now, should they dare, they have an opportunity to experience it first hand.

In his first season as a member of the Nationals, Scherzer has launched a D.C. chapter of Big League Impact, an organization started by Adam Wainwright that uses fantasy football and player-fan interaction to raise money for local charities.

"We get to accomplish two goals here," Scherzer said. "Have some fun, play some fantasy football and raise some money for a good cause."

On Aug. 22, the Nationals will host fantasy football drafts at Nationals Park, matching fans in leagues with several players including Scherzer, Bryce Harper, Stephen Strasburg, Ryan Zimmerman, Denard Span and Matt Thornton.

"We talk trash on the fans," said Scherzer. "That makes it great. They talk trash on us over picks and we talk trash on them. It's a great experience."

The winners of the league will receive prizes, which last year included Super Bowl tickets and a ski trip to Colorado, but the main purpose of the league is to raise money for the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation, the Nationals Youth Baseball Academy and the Big League Impact Global Fund.

"For me, I really enjoy helping out the Youth Baseball Academy," Scherzer said. "That's something that any time you're helping out the game of baseball with at risk children, that puts a smile on my face. The fact that we have a fantasy football vehicle to help that makes it even better because it allows us to help raise money for a great cause and do it in a unique and fun way."

Big League Impact has set a global goal to provide clean drinking water for 5,000 people, provide 2,500 mosquito nets to help stop the spread of malaria, relieve 100,000 children of internal parasites and prevent blindness in 500-plus individuals.

Jacob Emert is an associate reporter for
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