3 Most Important Rangers Trade Targets With Shohei Ohtani Off the Market

Shohei Ohtani isn't for sale anymore, but there are still other big names we could get.

3 trade targets the Rangers should pivot to now that Shohei Ohtani is off the market.
3 trade targets the Rangers should pivot to now that Shohei Ohtani is off the market. / Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
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Well, that was fun while it lasted. While the Angels were apparently open to the idea of trading Shohei Ohtani last week, that is no longer the case. The club cemented its position as trade deadline buyers this week by dealing for Lucas Giolito, which means Ohtani will stay put in Anaheim for at least a few more months.

That's alright, though, because trading for Ohtani was always just a pipe dream, anyways. Now we can focus on more realistic (and affordable) targets ahead of the Aug. 1 deadline with the hopes of maximizing our World Series chances in October.

With that in mind, here are three players we should be going after with Ohtani off the market.

3 Rangers Trade Targets

1. Justin Verlander

With Jacob deGrom out for the season, we could still use a bona fide ace for the playoff push. Fortunately, there just so happens to be a couple of those available in New York.

The more realistic and desirable one is Justin Verlander. Even though he's a year older than Max Scherzer, he's coming off a Cy Young award and a World Series title with the Houston Astros last season. He also has the better numbers as of this writing with a 3.24 ERA and 1.15 WHIP compared to Scherzer's 4.20 ERA and 1.19 WHIP. Plus, Verlander still has another year of team control after this one, whereas Scherzer can become a free agent this winter if he declines his player option.

The fact that Verlander was with Houston from 2017-2022 could also make him more amenable to coming back to Texas, especially with a chance to stick it to his old team in the division. Nothing motivates an older player better than some good old-fashioned revenge.

Verlander may not be quite Cy Young-level anymore, but he's still one of the best pitchers in baseball and would give our rotation a massive boost. With our deep pockets and prospect capital, we could certainly swing a deal for him that would please both sides.