The three-time Cy Young winner tossed 27 pitches (14 strikes), giving up one hit, one walk and one earned run with one strikeout.
This is not the first time in recent years the right-hander has dealt with an injury. Scherzer was scheduled to start Game 5 of the 2019 World Series. On the day of the game, however, he experienced back and neck pain so severe he was unable to lift his right arm.
The Nationals scratched Scherzer as a result and started Joe Ross instead. Washington lost the game 7-1 to the Houston Astros, with Ross allowing four earned runs in five innings.
Scherzer returned for Game 7, pitching five innings and allowing two earned runs as the Nationals beat the Astros 6-2 to claim their first title.
In general, the seven-time All-Star continued to be one of MLB's best pitchers in 2019. He finished fourth in WAR (6.5), per FanGraphs, after going 11-7 with a 2.45 FIP in 27 starts. He set a career high for strikeout rate as well, averaging 12.69 per nine innings.
The Nationals re-signed Stephen Strasburg to a seven-year, $245 million extension to keep last year's starting rotation intact. Between Strasburg and Patrick Corbin, Washington still has two strong anchors for the unit. But Scherzer's absence will be felt nonetheless.