Eric Stephen of SB Nation reported the news, noting manager Dave Martinez said Joe Ross will take the ball instead.
"He was in a bad place. He's really upset about it," Martinez said, per Mark Zuckerman.
Scherzer later spoke to reporters, saying he wasn't able to dress himself without his wife's help.
"It just blew up on me," Scherzer said. "I can't even move."
The right-hander also noted he can't lift his arm because of the injury.
Having numerous health concerns in a single season is relatively new for the 35-year-old, who made 30 or more starts 10 years in a row entering the 2019 campaign. That durability allowed him to develop into one of the best pitchers of his generation.
He is a three-time Cy Young Award winner and seven-time All-Star who has anchored pitching staffs with the Detroit Tigers and Nationals for much of his career. He is in the middle of one of the most dominant pitching stretches in recent memory, having won the National League Cy Young in 2016 and 2017 and finishing as the runner-up in 2018.
Scherzer led the league last season in a number of categories, including strikeouts (300), WHIP (0.91), innings pitched (220.2) and wins (18) while posting a 2.53 ERA. The Missouri native followed with a 2.92 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 243 strikeouts in 172.1 innings this year.
The ability to unleash the one-two punch of Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg is a primary reason the Nationals reached the World Series. They are now two wins away from a championship and will likely need Ross, who struggled on his way to a 5.48 ERA this season but pitched well down the stretch, to deliver in a pressure-packed situation.