Add this to the list of weird injuries affecting the New York Mets this season.
Right-handed pitcher Max Scherzer was bitten by one of his dogs on his pitching hand recently near his home in Florida.
After an initial report that the bite was to his off-hand, Scherzer clarified on social media Saturday that the injury was to his pitching hand. He also described the incident as a “non-story” that won’t impact his rehab from an oblique injury.
Per Scherzer, he sustained the injury when he reached down to comfort his dog Rafi, who was in pain after injuring her leg. He wrote that “it wasn’t a bad bite” and that he’s already resumed throwing.
This news came a few days after shortstop Francisco Lindor fractured the top of his right middle finger while closing a hotel door. Lindor only missed one game, while Scherzer is still recovering from an oblique strain he suffered in mid-May.
It doesn’t sound like the dog bite will impact Scherzer’s expected return to the mound in July, and Mets manager Buck Showalter said on Thursday that Scherzer’s rehab from the oblique injury was going well.
Scherzer’s work with animals
Scherzer and his wife, Erica, are avid dog lovers who’ve adopted four of their own: Bo, Rafi, Rocco and Zou. Coincidentally, Scherzer and three of his dogs — Bo, Rafi and Rocco — all have heterochromia, meaning they have different colored eyes.
The Scherzers have also been major advocates for animals. They sponsored pet adoption fees in Washington, D.C., for the Humane Rescue Alliance when Max played for the Nationals in 2021, and Erica is a board member for HRA. Max has also appeared in several adoption promotional videos for HRA and Pets for Life.
“I’ve always been an animal person, I’ve always loved dogs,” Scherzer said in an NBC Sports interview in 2021. “My wife and I, even though we’ve dated the whole time, we were never really in the position to have a dog. We just realized we traveled too much. But then when we got to D.C., we felt like life was at least stable enough and that’s when we adopted our first two, Bo and Rafi.”
As for his Mets tenure, Scherzer was 5-1 before his mid-May oblique injury with a 2.54 ERA.
He pulled himself out of his start against the St. Louis Cardinals on May 18 following a pitch to Albert Pujols with two outs in the sixth inning. The Mets announced later in the game he was experiencing discomfort on his left side before calling the injury a “moderate to high grade internal oblique strain” on May 19. The Mets gave him an initial six-to-eight-week recovery timetable, which would put his potential return between June 30 and July 14.
The Mets currently sit first in the NL East with a 35-19 record.