Former Nationals star Max Scherzer made his first start for the Los Angeles Dodgers against the Houston Astros on Wednesday night. He didn't miss a beat.
Scherzer excelled in his first start wearing Dodger Blue, throwing seven innings while allowing just two runs and striking out 10 batters. The Dodgers built him an early lead and the bullpen held on, as Los Angeles defeated Houston, 7-5.
For many Nationals fans watching the game, Scherzer's performance was similar to many of the stellar outings he had while playing in the nation's capital.
Here are three moments from the game that will make Nationals fans miss the future Hall of Famer:
Scherzer struck out Jose Altuve three times
Max Scherzer had not faced the Astros second baseman since the 2019 World Series, but the 37-year-old made him look silly all evening long. Altuve was sat down on strikes three times
Scherzer fanning Altuve three times surely fired up Dodgers fans, who are still bitter losing the 2017 World Series to Houston.
He left it all in the tank
Many times during Scherzer's career with the Nationals, he got better as the game went on. His energy continued to rise, and when the three-time Cy Young winner knew he only had a batter or so left before he was done, he emptied everything he had left in the tank.
On Wednesday, Scherzer did the same thing to end the seventh inning, his final frame of the outing.
With two outs in the seventh inning and the Astros threatening, Scherzer reached back and threw a 96 mph fastball to strike out Chas McCormick to end the frame. It was also Scherzer's 10th strikeout of the night.
When he got to the dugout, Scherzer was greeted with handshakes and high-fives from the entire team. Yet, it was Clayton Kershaw and Albert Pujols giving him high-fives and hugs, not Juan Soto and Ryan Zimmerman.
He got a curtain call
Shortly after he was greeted by his teammates in the dugout following his seventh inning, Dodgers fans started yelling Scherzer's name.
A few moments later, Scherzer ran up the dugout steps and took off his cap, saluting the fans after his stellar performance.
"To have the fans ask for a curtain call for me, I never had that happen before," Scherzer told reporters after the game. "That was a cool moment. That’s something I’ll never forget.''
Dodger Stadium was packed on Wednesday night in what was the largest crowd of any Major League Baseball game this season. According to reports, there were 52,724 fans were in attendance for Wednesday's contest. It also marked the 35th sellout for the Dodgers this season.
Wednesday night was one neither Scherzer of Dodgers fans will forget anytime soon. For those fans who support Los Angeles, the hope is that Scherzer's outing against Houston was just a sign of what's to come over the next few months.
For Nationals fans, though, a lot of them feel like this: