Scherzer strikes out season-high 15 in win over Reds


CINCINNATI, OH – JUNE 02: Max Scherzer #31 of the Washington Nationals talks to Kurt Suzuki #28 in the dugout following the eighth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on June 2, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Nationals won 4-1. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

CINCINNATI (AP) – Max Scherzer struck out a season high 15, allowing three hits over eight innings to lead the Washington Nationals over Cincinnati 4-1 on Sunday, their 12th win in 14 games against the Reds.

Scherzer (3-5) reached double figures in strikeouts for the fourth time in 13 starts this season and 86th time in his career, the most among active pitchers and seventh-most overall. He retired 13 of his last 14 batters and threw 84 of 120 pitches for strikes. Scherzer walked one and hit a batter.

Sean Doolittle pitched a perfect ninth for his 12th save in 14 chances. Washington won the final two games of the series after losing the opener and has won seven of nine following a five-game losing streak.

Sonny Gray (2-5) needed 32 pitches to get through the first and gave up two runs and five hits in five innings.

Cincinnati batters struck out 16 times, tying their season high.

Anthony Rendon had three hits, including an RBI single in the first, and raised his average to .331.

Kurt Suzuki doubled the lead with an RBI double in the fourth, but Joey Votto and Derek Dietrich hit consecutive doubles in the bottom half off Scherzer, who had pitched 15 scoreless innings at Great American Ballpark in his career.

Brian Dozier hit a two-run single with two outs in the eighth off Raisel Iglesias.

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