Updated: Nov 12, 2019
That's a face everyone should love. (Courtesy ESPN.)
Forbidden Love is a Cubs DNA series where our staff waxes poetic about a player on a team other than the Cubs. Maybe even one you think they should hate. In this installment, Staci talks about her love for Washington Nationals starting pitcher and newly minted World Series Champion Max Scherzer.
Astros fans, feel free to click out of this post if the hurt is still a little raw. (Although I'm not sure why Astros fans would be reading a Cubs blog, but we welcome all fans here! We're inclusive!) (Except not you, Cardinals fans.)
Even though I embrace a lot of new ideas about baseball, I'm still one of the Olds and can have a soft spot for a guy with an old school, tough, hard nosed, let's-get-it-done-don't-even-think-about-pulling-me attitude. One of my favorite baseball moments ever is this:
Also probably one of Trea Turner's favorite moments right now.
Why? Because sometimes you just need That Guy. The Intimidator. The guy who refuses to give up the ball, then actually gets the job done. There just aren't enough of those guys around anymore, in my opinion, which is why we need Max Scherzer. Max can be, shall we say, disagreeable when his managers come to pull him from the game. Davey Martinez has felt the wrath, and I'm gonna let Jomboy break it down for you.
I mean, he struck out Joey and I'm not even mad! But Davey wasn't the first Nats manager to feel the wrath of Max. Just ask Dusty Baker...
This should've been Dusty's dream scenario, to be honest.
And Matt Williams...
I bet you forgot Matt Williams managed the Nats, didn't you?
Watching Williams and the other guys scatter in that last clip is magic, is it not? If Max isn't yelling at his managers, then he's grunting so loudly you can actually hear it on the broadcast. I've heard Max grunt over the radio, television, and maybe all the way in California when he's at home in Nats Park, that's how loud it is.
Oh, and did I mention he also talks to himself and curses out batters while he's on the mound? Sometimes mid-delivery?
"That man is a psycho!" you might be thinking. Ah, but if he is, he's exactly the kind you want on your team. I'll admit to having raging Scherzer Envy--I'd take him on the Cubs tomorrow, and probably give up a lot to do it, even with him on the way wrong side of 30. Max is a competitor. He's the guy who comes in and throws seven scoreless innings with a broken nose. He's also the guy who, two days after suffering debilitating neck spasms, starts Game 7 of the World Series and throws 103 pitches while holding the potent Houston Astros offense to a measly two runs so your team can come back and win the whole stinkin' thing. If there's any non-Cub I'd want to see win a World Series, it was this guy, so if you'll allow me to close out with this bit of self indulgence...