At 44-48, the Texas Rangers are 5.5 games behind the first-place Seattle Mariners in the AL West and seven games out of a Wild Card berth. But as the Rangers prepare for the trade deadline and beyond, Max Scherzer still believes Texas has a strong case to make the playoffs.

Scherzer doesn't plan on waiving his no-trade clause to facilitate a deal away from the Rangers, via Foul Territory. He would rather stick it out with Texas and prove they still have what it takes to defend their World Series title.

“Yeah, I'm not gonna do that,” Scherzer said of waiving his no-trade clause. “We're gonna play better baseball. It's gonna be a moot point to even talk about. We're gonna win here.”

Set to be a free agent after the season, it's fair to wonder what Scherzer's true trade value is. He has spent the majority of the season on the injured list, just recently making his recently. Still, he has looked impressive over his four 2024 starts, posting a 3.09 ERA and a 17/3 K/BB ratio.

The Rangers would surely understand if a team was interested in Scherzer. They used the same strategy to win their first World Series in 2023. Furthermore, the right-hander has pitched to 215-110 record with a 3.15 ERA and a 3,384/749 K/BB ratio. He's an eight-time All-Star, three-time Cy Young winner and two-time World Series champion.

While Texas may listen to offers, Max Scherzer isn't prepared to leave. His no-trade clause will ensure of it. The Rangers are going to have to put up quite the battle to work their way into the playoffs. But it's a fight Scherzer is prepared for and one he wouldn't want to be in with any other team.

State of Rangers' pitching rotation

Texas Rangers catcher Andrew Knizner (12) looks on as manager Bruce Bochy (15) pulls starting pitcher Max Scherzer (31) in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium.
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The return of Scherzer has helped solidify Texas' pitching rotation ahead of the second half. If the sell at the deadline, it'll all become a moot point. But if the Rangers make a run for it, they should have more than enough pitching to stay afloat.

That is of course if everyone is healthy. Cody Bradford, Jacob deGrom, Dane Dunning and Tyler Mahle all still find themselves on the injured list. Texas will hope at least one if not multiple of their injured pitchers can contribute down the stretch. A return of all four would be a major boon.

In their stead, the Rangers have turned to players such as Nathan Eovaldi, Michael Lorenzen and Andrew Heaney. Eovaldi holds a 6-3 record with a 3.10 ERA and an 85/26 K/BB ratio. Lorenzen is right behind him with a 5-4 record, 3.21 ERA and 62/40 K/BB ratio. Heaney has posted a brutal 3-9 record, but a better 3.80 ERA and 92/24 K/BB ratio.

All in all, the Rangers rank 16th in the league with their 3.98 ERA. Texas knows their chances of improving their standing come with Max Scherzer on the roster.

They may be facing an uphill battle, but Scherzer still believes. When the trade deadline comes and goes, the right-hander plans to be wearing a Rangers jersey through it all.