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Rangers Veteran Pitcher On Track to Pitch in Rehab Assignment

The Texas Rangers have announced where in its minor league system Max Scherzer will pitch. All signs are pointing toward a return for the veteran right-hander to the defending World Series champions’ rotation soon. Scherzer will begin his rehab assignment on Wednesday at Triple-A Round Rock, per Jeff Wilson of Rangers Today. The goal is to have Scherzer throw 50 pitches in that appearance. A few weeks ago, general manager Chris Young indicated that the team wasn’t going to place Scherzer on the 60-day injured list.

As his rehab continues to progress and his first rehab start tomorrow, he could return at some point in late May.

Max Scherzer Set for Rehab Start on Wednesday

Less than five months after surgery to repair a herniated disk, Scherzer’s eyes a return sooner than anybody would have expected. After a series of bullpen sessions and live batting practices over the last week was a sign that he was going to start soon.

“We’re not ready to say the data, but we’re looking at early May in being able to come back,” Scherzer said when the Rangers were in Detroit early last week.

After joining the Rangers at the trade deadline last season, Scherzer went 4-2 with a 3.20 ERA in eight starts down the stretch. He missed the final two weeks of the 2023 season due to a muscle strain in his right shoulder. Scherzer was able to make three postseason starts during the Rangers World Series run. Scherzer has told reporters that he has felt ahead of schedule since the moment he returned from the surgery.

“I really feel like we’re kind of turning the corner here in terms of rehab,” Scherzer said on Apri; 10. “I’m recovering from things and kind of feeling normal. Looking good.”

What Does That Mean for the Pitching Staff?

Scherzer’s return will help the depth of the rotation. Both Jacob deGrom and Tyler Mahle continue to rehab from Tommy John surgery. Their returns aren’t expected until the summer, likely after the All-Star break. With Cody Bradford sidelined with a back strain, the need for depth is apparent. But for now, until Scherzer returns, the Rangers will continue to use the five-man rotation of Dane Dunning, Nathan Eovaldi, Jon Gray, Andrew Heaney and Michael Lorenzen.

Good News for Bullpen

Rangers roster moves for Tues:
-C Jonah Heim activated from Bereavement List
-RHP Jonathan Hernández activated from 15-day IL
-C Sam Huff optioned to Round Rock postgame Sun.
-RHP Owen White optioned to Round Rock (Mon.)
-RHP Josh Sborz sent to Frisco on injury rehab assignment

In addition to Scherzer’s news, the bullpen will get a boost. The Rangers activated right-hander Jonathan Hernández from the 15-day IL. Hernández, 27, pitched ten innings at Round Rock while on a rehab assignment for a lat injury. Josh Sborz, who went on the injured list on April 6, is eligible to return later this week. The Rangers have made 14 moves in 17 days involving ten different pitchers. Texas has used 18 pitchers in their first 23 games, tied for the sixth most in baseball. Their division rivals, the Houston Astros, lead the league with 23.

Main Photo: © Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK



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