Rangers pitcher going on rehab assignment might be too late to save 2024 season

Texas Rangers Photo Day
Texas Rangers Photo Day / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

After two consecutive big wins, and three straight games scoring five or more runs, the Texas Rangers seem as if their offensive troubles might have found an end. But then they dropped the final two games against the San Diego Padres.

It feels like forever since we've seen this offense reach their full capability. However, despite this newfound optimism, Texas still looms far away from the playoff picture. They cannot string together wins or find enough consistency. With time running out, will these "mid-season reinforcements" be able to get the Rangers out of this hole?

All season long, the mindset of the Rangers has been stay afloat until you get your big three back. The big three of course being Jacob deGrom, Max Scherzer, and Tyler Mahle.

Well, with Scherzer back, it's Mahle's turn to find his way to the rotation. Mahle logged a rehab assignment at Triple-A Round Rock Tuesday night, completing two innings and allowing only one hit. He struck out one hitter and topped out at 93.5 MPH while averaging around 92 on his fastball.

The 29-year-old right-hander was drafted in the seventh round by the Cincinnati Reds in 2013. He pitched for the Reds for six seasons before being shipped off to Minnesota in 2022. In 2023, Mahle was finally putting together his best stuff, pitching to the tune of a 3.16 ERA, before undergoing Tommy John surgery.

The California native joins an already crowded Rangers rotation, but it is almost a certainty he will be getting a spot when he is ready in a few weeks time. That's great and all, but with the Rangers at 39-48, the need for Mahle (and any other help in the form of returning players) may have already passed.

With the Rangers still 8.5 games out of a playoff spot, they need near-perfection the rest of the way, and it starts with Mahle giving them quality outings from the jump, which is unlikely. Hopefully with the combination of this talented starter, and some more position player help on the health front, Texas can turn this thing around. But most fans would venture to say that it's too late.