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Mets takeaways from Wednesday’s exhibition game against Nicaragua, including Max Scherzer’s nine strikeouts

New York Mets starting pitcher Max Scherzer (21) throws a warmup pitch before the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Clover Park. / Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets played an exhibition game against Nicaragua at Clover Park on Wednesday night, falling by a score of 2-0.

Here are the takeaways…

Max Scherzer took the mound for his third start of spring training and struck out the side in the first inning. He was working fast between each pitch despite there not being a pitch clock in the game due to it being played with WBC rules.

He had a bit of a hiccup in the second inning, giving up a leadoff home run to the third baseman Cheslor Cuthbert that put Nicaragua on the board. Scherzer’s defense didn’t do him any favors after the blast as first baseman Mark Vientos and shortstop Luis Guillorme both booted balls on the infield that put Scherzer in hot water.

However, he subsequently struck out the next three batters to get out of the jam and keep it a 1-0 game.

Scherzer would go on to punch out the side once again in the third inning to give him nine strikeouts on the night. After a walk to start the fourth inning, Buck Showalter pulled the 38-year-old.

Francisco Alvarezwho was behind the plate catching Scherzer, walked in his first at-bat of the game before grounding out softly to the pitcher in his next plate appearance.

The No. 1 overall prospect also made a poor throw to second base in the third inning trying to cut down a stolen base attempt. The ball sailed into center field which allowed the runner to go to third base. He then scored later in the inning.

– There wasn’t much offense coming from the Mets’ hitters in this one as they went hitless for the first six innings. It wasn’t until Ronny Mauricio‘s infield single in the seventh inning that gave New York its first hit of the night, and it stayed that way for the rest of the game.

– Mauricio came up in the bottom of the ninth inning with runners on first and second with nobody out after a walk and hit-by-pitch began the frame, but he grounded into a double play. Alex Ramirez ended the game with a groundout and the Mets lost 2-0.


What’s next

The Mets host another WBC exhibition game, this time against Venezuela, at 1:10 pm on Thursday.

They are back to normal spring training action on Friday with a split squad doubleheader as they welcome the Houston Astros for a 1:10 pm start time at Clover Park.

At 7:05 pm, the Mets will also play the St. Louis Cardinals at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, FL.

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