LOS ANGELES -- Max Scherzer had been anticipating his 3,000th career strikeout. He had his family on hand, and Los Angeles Dodgers fans knew it was coming.
As if that wasn't enough history for one day, he nearly threw a perfect game, too.
Scherzer got his milestone and took a perfect game into the eighth inning as the Dodgers beat the San Diego Padres 8-0 Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.
"In the fifth or sixth, I realized I had something going there," he said. "Once I was able to get through the sixth, I was like, 'I got a chance to do this.'"
Alas, it wasn't to be.
Scherzer retired his first 22 batters, including Fernando Tatis Jr. just before Eric Hosmer doubled to deep right with one out in the eighth. The crowd of 42,637, including his wife, three children and parents, saluted Scherzer with a standing ovation after he finished the inning, his second of the day.
"I knew Tatis and Hosmer were going to be tough at-bats," Scherzer said. "Hosmer, we've done so many battles over the years. I pulled a changeup down and he was able to put a barrel to it."
Scherzer reached 3,000 career strikeouts in the fifth when Hosmer went down swinging for the second out of the inning. The crowd roared long and loud for the 37-year-old All-Star, who doffed his cap and threw the historic ball toward the dugout.
"To me, this is a testament to durability," Scherzer said. "Making my 30-plus starts a year, year in and year out. All the hard work I've put in to be able to have this moment is what feels good."
Scherzer struck out nine overall on 92 pitches over eight innings in recording his 10th consecutive win.
"I love strikeouts because the ball's not in play," he said. "They can't get a hit when the ball's not in play. When the ball's in play, anything can happen."
CARDINALS 2, REDS 0 Nolan Arenado homered for the second game in a row and five pitchers combined on a five-hitter as St. Louis beat Cincinnati.
GIANTS 6, CUBS 5 Wilmer Flores homered and drove in three runs, Kris Bryant scored two against his former team, and San Francisco hung on against Chicago for its season-high seventh consecutive win.
BRAVES 5, MARLINS 3 Ozzie Albies and Freddie Freeman each hit a home run off Anthony Bass in the seventh inning, Eddie Rosario went deep off Edward Cabrera in the fourth, and Atlanta beat Miami.
NATIONALS 6, PIRATES 2 Patrick Corbin worked seven strong innings as Washington avoided a three-games sweep at Pittsburgh.
ROCKIES 5, PHILLIES 4 Garrett Hampson homered twice and knocked in all five runs as Colorado dealt another blow to Philadelphia's playoff hopes.
ROYALS 5, TWINS 3 Kyle Isbel drove in the go-ahead run with a single in the eighth inning and Kansas City beat Minnesota.
BLUE JAYS 22, ORIOLES 7 Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Teoscar Hernandez each hit a grand slam, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. slugged his 44th home run, and Toronto overpowered Baltimore, finishing two runs shy of the franchise record.
WHITE SOX 2, RED SOX 1 Leury Garcia homered with two outs in the ninth inning to lift Chicago over Boston.
RANGERS 4, ATHLETICS 3 Isiah Kiner-Falefa had three hits and two RBI, Taylor Hearn won his fourth consecutive start and Texas put another dent in Oakland's playoff hopes.
ASTROS 3, ANGELS 1 Lance McCullers Jr. threw six strong innings, Kyle Tucker homered and Houston beat Los Angeles.
TIGERS 8, RAYS 7 (11) Robbie Grossman drew a bases-loaded walk in the 11th inning, Jeimer Candelario homered twice, and Detroit beat Tampa Bay.
METS 7, YANKEES 6 Francisco Lindor hit a home run in the bottom of the eighth inning, his third of the night, to lift the New York Mets over the New York Yankees.
DIAMONDBACKS 5, MARINERS 4 Tyler Gilbert gave up two hits in another sharp outing, Ketel Marte homered and Arizona beat Seattle.
BREWERS 11, INDIANS 1 Eric Lauer no-hit Cleveland into the sixth inning a day after Milwaukee threw a history-making no-no, and his teammates belted five home runs.