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Scherzer dominates again as Dodgers beat Reds

Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Scherzer throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds
in Cincinnati on Sept. 18, 2021 (September 19 in Manila). AP PHOTO

CINCINNATI: Max Scherzer pitched seven shutout innings in another dominant performance for the Los Angeles Dodgers, who kept up their push in the NL West with a 5-1 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday (Sunday in Manila).

Scherzer (15-4) improved to 7-0 in nine starts since being traded from Washington to the Dodgers on July 30. He allowed just two hits, struck out seven and lowered his MLB-best ERA to 2.08.

The Dodgers began the day two games behind division-leading San Francisco.

It was another tough loss for the Reds, who came in one game behind St. Louis for the second NL wild-card spot. Cincinnati will try Sunday to avoid losing its eighth straight series.

“I had a good feel for my curveball today,” Scherzer said. “I was able to throw it low in the zone. If I can get that going, that allows my fastball to play. That allows Barnesy (catcher Austin Barnes) to get more creative back there.”

The three-time Cy Young Award winner has an 0.78 ERA in his starts for the Dodgers.

“He’s been really good. To execute multiple pitches to multiple quadrants, it’s incredible. We’re fortunate to be seeing it,” manager Dave Roberts said.

Just about the only thing Scherzer hasn’t done for the Dodgers is deliver at the plate. A good-hitting pitcher for nearly his entire career, he is now 0 for 55 overall this season – not safely reaching base once – after going hitless in three at-bats.

But on the mound, he was almost unhittable.

“Scherzer is like we’ve seen before,” Reds manager David Bell said. “He can take over a game. He did today.”

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