Don't freak out about the Scherzer-Strasburg argument

Josh Luckenbaugh
July 23, 2018 - 12:58 pm

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


Stephen Strasburg's return from the DL on Friday went about as badly as it could have gone. Strasburg failed to get out of the fifth inning, surrendered six runs, and took the loss in the Nationals ' 8-5 defeat against the Atlanta Braves. 

And on top of all that, TV cameras caught Strasburg exchanging words with Max Scherzer in the dugout, before the pair disappeared down the tunnel to continue their visibly heated conversation. 

Some may look at the moment as an encapsulation of the Nationals' disappointing season so far, the point at which the team's optimistic resolve finally broke. 

RUSSELL: Stras comes off temperamental, 'soft'

However, when you think about it, exchanges like this probably occur repeatedly throughout a 162-game season. 

Baseball players, particularly Scherzer and Strasburg, are fierce competitors, and when things don't go their way, it's natural for them to get frustrated. And when you're surrounded by other fierce competitors in a pressure-packed environment, emotions sometimes boil over. 

As Jerry Brewer argued in a column for The Washington Post, it's a good sign that the Nats are showing some fire. Their season's essentially on the line, after all. 

The only thing that made Scherzer and Strasburg's argument special was the cameras. It was obviously bad optics, but in the grand scheme of things, it was nothing more than an expression of frustration from a frustrated player to his hyper-competitive teammate. In the same situation, we all probably would have done something similar, if not worse. 

And not to tempt fate but, just remember, things could be worse: 

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