Max Scherzer was back in town Monday with the Rangers for the first time since the Mets traded him to Texas on July 29, although the three-time Cy Young winner won’t pitch in the three-game series.
Buck Showalter offered a glowing response when asked before the series opener, a 4-3 Mets loss, what he learned about Scherzer during their 1 ¹/₂ seasons together with the Mets.
“I always like when you get a player with that type of career under your belt, you’re kind of curious to why they’ve been able to have that consistent success,” Showalter said. “With Max, it was ‘OK, I get it now.’ He’s driven and I’ve said it a million times, he’s a baseball player who happens to be a pitcher. He was always on me about pinch-running and to check out his batting and his ability to bunt.
“Loved winning, on the days he didn’t pitch, too. Very blunt and honest, which made it refreshing to not have to tiptoe around a subject matter. And he was always talking about his teammates. Max was a great teammate and a winning player. We were lucky to have him.”
With the Mets fading from playoff contention, Scherzer and co-ace Justin Verlander (Astros) were traded on consecutive days before the deadline.
David Robertson, Tommy Pham and Mark Canha also were among those dealt away.
Outfielder Starling Marte began undergoing physical therapy in Philadelphia on Monday for the groin injury that has sidelined him since Aug. 5.
He had undergone surgery in Philly after the Mets were eliminated last season to repair his core.
He is expected to remain there through Friday before getting reevaluated, Showalter said.
“It’s somebody that our trainers and medical people and trainers think highly of and want to see him work with them,” Showalter added. “Now that we’ve identified an idea of what it is and what it’s not, we feel confident about that.
“But I think we’ll know more when the physical therapists and the trainers and doctors sign off on where we are after that.”
According to the Mets, they raised a record gross contribution of $140,000 from the NYPD vs. FDNY “Battle of the Badges” charity game held at Citi Field on Aug. 17, a 40 percent increase from last year. Former Mets captain David Wright hosted the event.
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