Scherzer becomes 19th pitcher with 3,000 strikeouts

Meg Oliphant / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The greatest strikeout artist of this generation has made it to 3,000.

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Max Scherzer became just the 19th pitcher in MLB history to record 3,000 career strikeouts Sunday. He reached the milestone by sitting down San Diego Padres first baseman Eric Hosmer in the fifth inning at Dodger Stadium.

Scherzer is the second-fastest pitcher to record 3,000 strikeouts in both games pitched (404) and innings (2,516), according to Sarah Langs of MLB.com. Only Randy Johnson did it faster on both fronts. His 674 walks as of Sunday are the fewest by any pitcher in the 3,000-K club, according to Tyler Kepner of the New York Times.

"It's hard to describe the emotion of it. It's an awesome achievement, awesome milestone," Scherzer said, according to Michael J. Duarte of NBC Los Angeles. "Not too many people have reached this milestone. It's an awesome accomplishment. I love strikeouts."

Scherzer earned his first strikeout against Jack Cassel on April 29, 2008, as a reliever for the Arizona Diamondbacks. He compiled most of his Ks (1,610) over seven seasons with the Washington Nationals, with another 1,081 strikeouts coming as a member of the Detroit Tigers.

The three-time Cy Young winner has won three strikeout titles and posted a 300-K campaign in 2018. He's notched at least 200 strikeouts in nine of the last 10 seasons, including a run of eight straight 200-K campaigns that ended during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

"Everybody can have the ability to do this, but few have the durability to do this," Scherzer said, according to Dodger Insider. "That's what I take away from this, all the hard work I've put in to have this moment."

In addition to notching the milestone strikeout, the 37-year-old Scherzer recorded his third career immaculate inning earlier in Sunday's game, tying Sandy Koufax and Chris Sale for the all-time record.

Scherzer was perfect through 7 1/3 innings before Hosmer ended his bid for some more history with a double.

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Scherzer becomes 19th pitcher with 3,000 strikeouts
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