"We would have to command something that would be franchise-altering to consider moving him,” Nationals GM Mike Rizzo told The Athletic.

Nationals not thinking about trading Max Scherzer ‘right now,’ general manager says


Max Scherzer appears like he’ll remain with the Nationals for at least a little while longer.

During an interview with The Athletic this week, Washington general manager Mike Rizzo addressed recent reports that indicated the team could consider moving the 34-year-old ace if it did not work its way back into playoff contention.

“We’re certainly not thinking about that right now,” Rizzo said. “We control the best pitcher in baseball for 2 1/2 more years — three playoff runs. He’s extremely well-priced. If you look at his contract, he’s extremely, extremely well-priced. We would have to command something that would be franchise-altering to consider moving him.”

Scherzer has registered a 5-5 record with a 2.81 ERA in 15 starts so far this season. He has struck out 136 and walked 20 in 99 1/3 innings on the mound.

Scherzer signed a seven-year, $210 million contract with the Nationals in January 2015.

“I have zero control over that. It means nothing to me,” Scherzer said about the trade rumors. “I’m here to win here. I have too much to worry about, trying to pitch and prepare every fifth day. Why (expend) any mental capacity on it at all when it’s completely out of my control? If we turn the corner here and win, we don’t even have to talk about it.”

The Nationals finished play Monday in fourth place of the NL East with a 33-38 record. They trail the Braves by nine games for the division lead and are six games behind the Cubs for the second wild-card spot.

“We’ve dug ourselves a big hole. But we’ve dug it early enough where hopefully we can respond,” Rizzo said. “We all build these teams to win championships. But you also have to be flexible and open-minded enough to know when you have to make changes and go in a different direction.”

Washington also may look to trade infielder Anthony Rendon and closer Sean Doolittle, according to The Athletic.

 



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