Reigning National League Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer likely will miss the Washington Nationals' season opener because of a stress fracture in his right ring finger, manager Dusty Baker said on Thursday.
Scherzer, who has altered the grip on his fastball as a result of the injury, has been limited to tossing batting practice on two occasions during spring training. The 32-year-old has yet to appear in an exhibition game with the Nationals.
"At this point, probably no," Baker said of Scherzer's availability to pitch against the NL East rival Miami Marlins on April 3. "Opening day, I'm sure, is important to him but not as important as the rest of the season."
Scherzer, who also won the American League Cy Young Award with Detroit in 2013, joined an exclusive list of pitchers who claimed the honor in both leagues. The others are Gaylord Perry, Randy Johnson, Roger Clemens, Pedro Martinez and Roy Halladay.
Scherzer posted a 20-7 mark last season and topped both leagues with a 0.97 WHIP and 284 strikeouts.