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Max Scherzer not at his best in Mets’ Subway Series loss

The Max Scherzer-Aaron Judge showdowns that highlighted last month’s Subway Series games resumed Monday where they left off, with the Mets right-hander striking out the Yankees slugger in his first at-bat. 

Judge finally answered. In the third inning he snapped his streak of four straight strikeouts against Scherzer this season by crushing a 95 mph fastball into the right-field seats for a solo homer. 

Overall, Scherzer allowed four earned runs on seven hits over 6 ²/₃ innings in the Mets’ 4-2 loss at Yankee Stadium. Scherzer was the losing pitcher in his first attempt to secure career victory No. 200. 

Max Scherzer walks back to the dugout after being pulled in the seventh inning.
Max Scherzer walks back to the dugout after being pulled in the seventh inning.
Robert Sabo for the NY POST
Max Scherzer pitches on Monday during the Mets' loss to the Yankees.
Max Scherzer pitches on Monday during the Mets’ loss to the Yankees.
Robert Sabo for the NY POST

“You know, in the Subway Series everything is going to be amped up, it was a grind of a start,” Scherzer said. “Credit [Domingo] German for throwing the ball as well as he did, it kept the pressure on me.” 

Andrew Benintendi drove in the Yankees’ final two runs against Scherzer. In the fifth, Benintendi stroked an RBI double — ahead of loud outs to the warning track by Judge and Anthony Rizzo. In the seventh, Benintendi delivered an RBI single. As frustrating as Judge’s homer was for Scherzer, the Benintendi at-bats resonated louder. 

“I thought if I kept the ball down on Judge I could keep him in the ballpark, but he put a better swing on it, but that is not what lost the ballgame — it’s really the Benintendi at-bats,” Scherzer said. “I had him in a two-strike situation [in the fifth] and left a cutter over the plate instead of burying it. I am more frustrated with that pitch, specifically, and execution. He was able to keep that fair and that is the execution I am kind of kicking myself on.” 

Scherzer also allowed four earned runs in his start in Atlanta last Wednesday. It marks the first time this season he has allowed at least four earned runs in consecutive starts. Scherzer’s three strikeouts on Monday were a season low. 

“Just not really executing as sharply as I can with two strikes,” Scherzer said. “I will give credit to them, they had good at-bats, they grind you. But I also feel that if I execute my pitches I can generate some swings and misses in those situations.”

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