Found June 11, 2013 on Fox Sports Detroit:
Diamondbacksbraves_39b7
DETROIT Max Scherzer is stern and focused on the mound. Hes all business with a ball in his right hand and a batter sizing him up 60 feet, 6 inches away. And business has been great for Scherzer, whose vastly improved curveball has made him a likely All-Star and possible 20-game winner. In the clubhouse, Scherzer is different. He can usually be found joking with somebody or running a pool on the latest major sporting event. I try to stay positive, no matter what, Scherzer said. Im living my dream by playing baseball for a living. I enjoy every day I can play this game. There are so many different characters on this team. We have all kinds of people from all kinds of different countries. (Justin) Verlander is a character all the time. Theres Latin music playing, and Im running all the pools. The one now is on the NBA Finals. We even have a video guy (Jeremy Kelch) who talks trash. We sat in the dugout at Comerica Park before batting practice on the last home stand, discussing his life inside the game and off the field. But there was one topic he wouldnt discuss his younger brother, Alex, who took his life on June 21, 2012, after battling depression for many years. Im just not talking about it now, said Scherzer, who stared straight ahead and waited for the next question. Id spoken with Scherzer three years ago about how Alex, an assistant financial analyst, got him involved in using advanced metrics to analyze baseball statistics. Alex once told Max that, because of the rise in his fly-ball outs, he was bound to give up some homers. Max indeed gave up two homers in the next game and has used metrics in that regard since. There are very few things about baseball and life that dont remind Max of his brother. They were extremely close. Sometimes, though, the door should remain closed to the public on such private thoughts, and life in many other ways has been good to Scherzer. He finds joy in his hobbies scuba diving, golf, travel and mostly in the love of his life, Erica May. Weve been together ever since we met in college at Missouri, said Scherzer, who was drafted in the first-round by the Arizona Diamondbacks after his junior season in 2006. She was a softball player, and we were working out at the training facility. I came to find out, she was a pitcher, and she really caught my eye. So it was her pitching that did it? It was the total package, Scherzer, 28, said with a grin. She has the looks and smarts, too. We plan to be married this offseason. May, 27, was a history major at Missouri. Scherzer said she finished up her degree at Colorado State and is working on-line for an MBA degree. Scherzer, who scored 35 out of a possible 36 on the American College Test, studied business finance at Missouri. Seems like a perfect match. Theyre both smart, appealing ... and can pitch. Theyve also teamed up with Tigers president and general manager Dave Dombrowski and his wife, Karie Ross, in supporting a tiger preservation program that began with Ross Pennies for Paws donations, then branched to the Fish and Wildlife Commission's Endangered Species Fund. Congressional legislation created a tiger stamp that sends a portion of its cost to Wildlife Without Borders. Scherzer lives in Birmingham, Mich., during the baseball season, but he and May spend winters in Scottsdale, Ariz., where Camelback Mountain with vistas of Phoenix, Tempe and Scottsdale is a weekly climb he makes. I run Camelback, and its an overall fitness test, Scherzer said. It takes me a half hour to get to the top up a park path, and theres some hand-over-fist climbing as you move up the mountain. I hate running a mile and long distances; its boring. But this climb is adventurous, and there is a good sense of accomplishment at the top of the mountain. Its fun to see the whole valley and the geography of Phoenix. Its cool to watch a whole city from one point. Adventure lights up Scherzers eyes. Scuba diving at the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and in Maui was just great, he said. Youre down there swimming with sea turtles and whitetip reef sharks. Its an adrenaline rush, but its safe. Life with the Tigers is another kind of adventure what with the clubhouse pools, salsa music and Verlander. I asked Scherzer to describe his friendship with Verlander. Scherzer shook his head and chuckled before saying, Hes hard to describe. Hes probably the best pitcher in the game and can dominate. And hes fun to have on the team, even if it cost 140 million to keep him around. It was another zinger for his buddy, who signed an extension through at least 2019 that is guaranteed to pay him 180 million. I mentioned that the two of them seem to enjoy one-upping each other. People infer that onto us, Scherzer said, but I would not describe it that way at all. Both of us are on the same team, and were trying to win as many games as possible. The more talent on a team, the better off you will be. Scherzer is 8-0 with a 3.24 ERA headed into Tuesday nights start at Kansas City. Hes tied for second in the American League in wins behind Bostons Clay Buchholz (9-0). Scherzer's 100 strikeouts (third), .185 opponent batting average (second) and 0.89 WHIP (second) were among the leagues best through Sundays games. Hes on pace to win 22 games, and I asked about the significance that plateau would have for him. Twenty wins would mean Im pitching well with a good team behind me, said Scherzer, who was 16-7 last year. The ultimate goal of winning the World Series is all that matters here. "The sole purpose of everybody here -- from the manager to the general manager and through everybody in the whole system -- is about winning the Series. One things for sure, theyll enjoy the quest.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

The Evolution of Max Scherzer

Remember 2009? The Tigers were in first almost the entirety of the 2009 campaign, until the epic collapse in the month of September that led to a Tigers faultier and  Carlos Gomez crossing the plate in extra innings as the Twins took the central. In that offseason Dave Dombrowski made a trade that left some Tigers fans scratching their heads and wondering what the future of the...

Why aren’t the Detroit Tigers better than they are?

A lot of Detroit Tigers fans keep scratching their heads wondering how this team can be dominating in so many statistical categories yet not thoroughly crushing the competition as a whole. It’s a fair point. The Tigers are 36-27, which is good enough to place them 5.5 games atop the spotty AL Central. 36-27 isn’t exactly a record that makes you want to hide your eyes. After all...

Scherzer still undefeated as Tigers edge Royals, 3-2

Max Scherzer has always had incredible talent, but now he's using it to achieve things even Justin Verlander hasn't accomplished. By holding the Kansas City Royals to two runs on three hits while walking two and striking out six in seven innings, Scherzer led the Detroit Tigers to a 3-2 victory and snapped the Royals' six-game winning streak. Both of Scherzer's...

Tigers' offense still can't deliver for Fister

One of these days, the Detroit Tigers are going to score double-digit runs when Doug Fister is pitching. Fister certainly deserves it. But that night was not Monday night in Kansas City. It looked somewhat promising when Miguel Cabrera hit his 18th home run of the season, a two-run shot, in the third inning to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead. They were the first runs the Tigers had...

Don Kelly can't be stopped (lately)

New rule: If Rod Allen says a team can't stop Don Kelly, drink a keg. But Don Kelly really is en fuego. He's hitting 7-for-15 with runners in scoring position (2-for-6 in those situations with two outs), according to Jason Beck. He's 5-for-7 in his last 9 plate appearances with five RBI, including that game winning three-run dinger on Sunday. That's almost quite...

Austin Jackson could return to the Tigers by next weekend

Tigers centerfielder Austin Jackson’s stint on the 15-day DL with a strained left hamstring has carried on much longer than expected. In fact Jackson’s time on the 15-day DL has morphed itself into a 4 week DL stay with relatively little news to report on during that time period. Well that’s until now. According to Jason Beck of MLB.com, Jackson could begin a minor league rehab...

Valverde loses lead for Verlander, KC tops Tigers

Justin Verlander did his part, shutting down the Kansas City Royals. Once he left, the Detroit Tigers ran into trouble. Jose Valverde gave up a tying, two-run homer to Lorenzo Cain with two outs in the ninth inning, then Eric Hosmer hit a winning single in the 10th that lifted the Royals over Detroit 3-2 Wednesday. ''No closer wants a blown save,'' Valverde said...

Tigers have no timetable for Octavio Dotel's return

Detroit Tigers right-handed reliever Octavio Dotel has been on the disabled list since April 20 with inflammation in his throwing elbow, but the team still doesn't have a timetable for when the veteran will return, according to George Sipple of The Detroit Free Press. Tigers manager Jim Leyland is clearly puzzled by Dotel's status, as he simply told reporters that...

Choosing ASG pitchers? Take your pick

At least Jim Leyland has one easy decision with his American League All-Star pitching staff: Mariano Rivera -- leading the league with 23 saves in the final year of his historic career -- is as close to a no-brainer pick as one could imagine. Leyland won't have Rivera start the game as a tribute, as has been suggested by some. He would, however, like Rivera to get the ball with...

Royals celebrate walk-off win against Tigers in a weird way (GIF)

The Tigers bullpen combined to take a seven inning shut out start by Justin Verlander Wednesday afternoon and flush it down the toilet.  But they didn’t just choose your garden variety mostly-clean toilet at someone’s place of residence.  Instead, they found the nastiest public toilet on the face of the planet. Tigers “closer” (and I only use that term because they do)...

Preview: It's Shields vs. Verlander in series finale

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Justin Verlander has not been very sharp of late, but he's still putting the Detroit Tigers in position to win. The right-hander tries for a fifth straight winning start by continuing his success against the host Kansas City Royals on Wednesday. Verlander (8-4, 3.71 ERA) has won four in a row despite giving up 32 hits and posting a 4.85 ERA. He has...

Royals 3, Tigers 2(10)

Lorenzo Cain hit a tying, two-run homer off Jose Valverde with two outs in the ninth inning and Eric Hosmer had a winning single in the 10th, helping the Kansas City Royals overcome Justin Verlander's seven scoreless innings Wednesday in a 3-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers. Verlander did not allow a batter past first base, giving up three singles, striking out eight and walking...

Miguel Cabrera threw his gum at Ryan Raburn after he broke up no-hitter

Former Tiger Ryan Raburn broke up Jose Alvarez' no hitter yesterday bwo a solo home run. And Miguel Cabrera brushed him back after it. With his gum. [Big ole h/t It's Always Sunny in... Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com

Daybreak: Yardbarker Morning Bark

Lebron with a block for the ages, Justin Verlander ticks off Jim Leyland, and a very special guest introduces the Dodgers starting lineup...

Preview: Royals' Davis looks to build on positive last outing

(AP) -- The Kansas City Royals have their longest winning streak in nearly two years. They'll have to get past one of baseball's best pitchers to extend it further. Unbeaten Max Scherzer will take the mound for the Detroit Tigers in Kansas City on Tuesday night, looking to derail the Royals' run. Kansas City (29-32) won Monday's series opener 3-2 on the strength...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.