Bill Ladson

Scherzer all about getting ahead with first-pitch strikes

Scherzer all about getting ahead with first-pitch strikes

VIERA, Fla. -- Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer has accomplished quite a bit since he entered the league in 2008. He won the American League Cy Young Award in 2013, led the AL in victories the last two years and has struck out 200 or more batters in a season three consecutive years.

With that in mind, asked Scherzer the important stats he looks at after he pitches in a game. The first thing he looks at is first-pitch strikes and, second, after three pitches, where he is when he faces a particular hitter. He hopes to be ahead in the count (1-2) or to have already recorded the out.

"Those numbers are the first things I look at to see if I'm attacking hitters," Scherzer said.

Asked what was the most overrated stat for a pitcher, Scherzer picked the won/loss record.

"[The media loves] talking about the pitcher in the win and the pitcher in the loss," Scherzer said. "You give me all the credit and give me all the blame. ... Pitchers go out there and do their job. But it's a team [game]. The position players have to hit, they have to field. The bullpen has to shut it down. There are so many things that go into it in today's game. Wins and losses are completely overrated."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.