Division rival Rangers make huge splash as Angels continue to trail in playoff races

The Angels path to the postseason is much tougher after the Rangers have acquired Max Scherzer

Washington Nationals v New York Mets
Washington Nationals v New York Mets / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

The Los Angeles Angels have had a very interesting week thus far. They went all in, taking Shohei Ohtani off the trade market and acquiring both Lucas Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez in a blockbuster trade with the White Sox. Despite all of that momentum they gained from the Detroit series and the trade, the Halos lost the first two games of their massive series in Toronto and now trail the Jays by five games for the third Wild Card spot with Toronto owning the tiebreaker.

The Angels postseason odds have taken a serious his in the last couple of days, and things will only get harder with the Rangers making their big trade deadline splash.

The Rangers have acquired Max Scherzer in a deal that will only help the AL West division leaders improve. This is obviously difficult news for Angels fans to hear.

Max Scherzer joining the Rangers only makes the LA Angels path to the postseason that much harder

Winning the division was never likely, but it's not exactly out of reach either. The Angels trail Texas by just six games for first in the West and still have six games to play against them. Last time these teams matched up the Halos went to Arlington and took three of four.

The unfortunate thing is this makes Texas so much better. Sure, Scherzer isn't the pitcher he once was as he boasts a 4.01 ERA in 19 starts this season, but it certainly feels like he's going to step things up having something to play for. The Mets have been out of postseason contention for some time now, and Scherzer is a guy who seems to want nothing more than to win.

We've seen glimpses of the dominant Scherzer. His last time out he allowed just one run in seven innings in a victory over Washington. Yeah, it's just Washington, but what about his seven innings of one-hit ball against the Dodgers just three starts ago? He might not be consistently dominant, but he still has dominance in him.

The Rangers pitching has taken a hit due to the Jacob deGrom injury, and now Nathan Eovaldi seems to be dealing with something too. Adding Scherzer helps sure up their rotation.

As for 2024, Scherzer was required to opt into his $43.3 million player option as part of the deal (although the Mets are paying a large chunk of it). Texas also lost top prospect Luisangel Acuña as part of this deal.

The Angels have work to do to make the postseason this year. More trades to improve a struggling offense and bullpen must be made for them to have a shot. Let's see what Perry Minasian has up his sleeve.