2020 was the strangest baseball season of our lifetimes, for a number of reasons. The season was truncated down to just 60 games, stands were empty of all fans, and teams were limited to just playing opponents from their own geographic regions.
One change that went under-discussed at times was players having to sit in the stands instead of the their own dugout, in order to maintain social distancing. And whenever things get back to normal -- or as close to normal as they can -- that's something Nationals ace Max Scherzer definitely won't miss.
"Yeah, unique is probably the best word to say, but I actually hated it," Scherzer told MLB Network's Intentional Talk on Friday when asked about being forced to observe from afar. "I don't like watching the game from the stands. I enjoy watching it from the dugout and being with everybody. So with all the rules of having us have to sit everywhere, with the mask on, hopefully those days are behind us and I can actually watch a ballgame from the dugout."
Obviously, there are plenty of health-related reasons to hope for "those days" to be behind us all. But for Scherzer and the Nats, a sense of normalcy will be a pleasant return as well, especially when it comes to gameday protocols.
Scherzer wasn't exactly bad in 2020, but he did have his highest ERA since 2012 and his highest WHIP since 2011. It's not hard to imagine a return to a more regular routine helping most MLB players in 2021 and beyond.