Max Scherzer’s impending rehab assignment is great news for struggling Rangers

Texas Rangers pitcher Max Scherzer
Texas Rangers pitcher Max Scherzer / Mark Cunningham/GettyImages

The Texas Rangers have been treading water since the 2024 season began. The Rangers have been able to keep their head above water and are currently the only team in the American League West with a winning record.

Injuries have crushed the hopes and dreams of every Rangers fan wishing that this year's team would get off to a hot start. Jacob deGrom, Tyler Mahle, and Nathaniel Lowe all opened the 2024 season on the injured list.

Max Scherzer was on the IL when the season began as well, but it seems as though that won't be the case for much longer. Scherzer's timeline has been moved up and he could return as soon as early next month. In fact, the Rangers plan to send Scherzer on a rehab assignment this week.

Max Scherzer’s impending rehab assignment is great news for struggling Rangers

The Rangers haven't made the move official, so there's no telling where Scherzer's minor-league assignment will be. With Triple-A Round Rock and Double-A Frisco both at home this week, it's a good bet that Scherzer won't stray too far from Arlington.

Scherzer completed two live batting practice sessions this past week, throwing 20-plus pitches his first time out and then another 40 two days later. Scherzer's pitch count for his rehab assignment is not yet known, but the Rangers will surely want to get the former Cy Young Award-winner up to around 60-plus pitches before even considering a return to the active roster.

Scherzer's hernia surgery was supposed to keep him out of action until closer to June, if not July. But the right-hander has experienced no pain to date and is on track to return in a couple weeks.

Texas' starting rotation has been able middle-of-the-road through the first few weeks of the 2024 season, but walks have been a major concern. The Rangers' rotation is tied with the Houston Astros for the most walks (57) this season. It doesn't help they have a barren staff, with Cody Bradford hitting the IL recently as well.

The question upon Scherzer's return will be whether Michael Lorenzen remains in the Rangers rotation or is moved to the bullpen. Lorenzen has been solid in his first two starts with the Rangers this season, which likely means fellow starter Dane Dunning will be optioned back to the minor when Scherzer is ready for his 2024 debut.

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