Max Scherzer and his wife, Erica May Scherzer.
Photo by Alex Bierens de Haan/MLB Photos via Getty Images (left), Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images (right)

Max Scherzer's Wife Was a Star Pitcher in College

Before Max Scherzer was an MLB All-Star pitcher, he and his wife, Erica May-Scherzer, were pitchers in college together.

Texas Rangers pitcher Max Scherzer knows his way around the mound. "Mad Max" has tossed heat for six different Major League Baseball teams since 2008: the Arizona Diamondbacks, Detroit Tigers, Washington Nationals, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Mets, and now the 2023 World Series contestants, the Texas Rangers.

He's an eight-time MLB All Star, a three-time Cy Young winner, and the 2019 World Series champion. But through it all, Scherzer has remained loyal to one above all else Erica May-Scherzer, his wife since 2013 and his girlfriend since 2004.

Nobody understands a pitcher like a pitcher. Max met Erica May on the mound in Mizzou, where they both pitched for the University of Missouri. Since then, their lives have taken off, seemingly in different directions but together through it all. Erica May traded in her softball mitt for a ring — and the rest, as they say, has been baseball history.

Max Scherzer Met His Wife at Missouri

When Max met Erica May, she was a scholarship softball pitcher at the University of Missouri. The Colorado native played for Cherry Creek High School and won all-conference honors as a senior in high school, leading her team to the state quarterfinals. She also played for a local softball club, the Boulder Comets. In her final high school season, she led her conference in ERA, strikeout percentage and win/loss percentage. So, obviously, the Tigers were smitten with her — as was Max, from his freshman year to today.

Max entered the Missouri Tigers Hall of Fame in 2011 after breaking records and winning Big 12 Pitcher of the Year in 2005.

Flash forward to six cities, four kids and two rings (wedding first, World Series second) later. 

The Scherzer Family Welcomed a Fourth Child Recently

The Scherzer clan welcomed their first daughter, Brooklyn, four years after their 2013 marriage. Another girl, Kacey, followed in 2019, followed by their first son, Derek Alexander. Two years after Derek's birth in 2021, their fourth child and third daughter, Nikki, was born. Four under the age of 10 is a lot — but Erica May-Scherzer manages to find time for philanthropy as well.

In a 2015 interview with the human trafficking advocacy group Polaris, Erica is described as an "activist, feminist, social justice, and human rights advocate," in addition to a Polaris Ambassador. She's known for supporting the Washington Nationals' "Night Out" LGBTQ community event and as an animal rights activist. According to the Polaris interview, May-Scherzer's advocacy began with animal welfare, a cause that was instilled in her by her family from a young age. She has also worked with groups advocating for women's empowerment, victims of domestic violence and other humanitarian causes. 

"I've learned to really keep an open mind and not stay with preconceived ideas or judgments. The different survivors I've met have experienced sex trafficking and labor trafficking, they are immigrants and U.S. citizens, young, old, male, female, LGBT — it's opened my eyes to the fact that there isn't one set of victims, there isn't one type. That's been a great lesson," she said.

Mother, activist, pitcher, wife — Erica May-Scherzer can do it all. Just like her husband, Max Scherzer, when he's on the baseball mound. 

Erica Once Threw Out His No-Hitter Jersey

Max Scherzer and his wife Erica at an NBA game.

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Max's achievements on the baseball diamond are well known. The man threw two no-hitters, which both came in the same 2015 season. Funny enough, Erica accidentally threw away his jersey from the second no-no in October 2016. 

Max joked about the incident on social media, and Erica joked she could be sleeping on the couch after the screw-up. 

Off the field, Scherzer's efforts are less publicized. He and his wife have partnered with the Detroit Tigers Foundation on Scherzer's Superstars, the aforementioned "Night Out" LGBTQ community event, and Strike Out Modern Slavery in 2016. The couple is also involved with the Humane Rescue Alliance, covering pet-adoption fees for Washington, D.C.-area shelters in the wake of Hurricane Harvey in 2017; and covering expensive adoption fees during a St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center adoption event in Madison, N.J., in 2022. 

Max Scherzer and Erica May-Scherzer have made sure that their lives are larger than just baseball. With four mouths to feed and an ever-expanding philanthropic outreach, Mad Max has the potential to be way more than just a two-time world champion. Whether he reaches that achievement or not, though, seems secondary to the true loves in his life — his family, his wife and giving back.

MORE: The Real Reason Max Scherzer Has Different-Colored Eyes