- The Washington Times - Monday, July 26, 2021

These could be the final days of Max Scherzer in a Washington Nationals uniform.

MLB’s trade deadline is Friday, and with the Nationals eight games behind in the NL East, Scherzer could be one of the biggest names on the market if Washington does look to become sellers.

If Scherzer is traded, the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers are the favorites to land him, according to the online sportsbook BetOnline. The oddsmakers list the Mets as 3/1 favorites to secure Scherzer, while the Dodgers are listed at 7/2. The Milwaukee Brewers (15/4), New York Yankees (9/2) and Houston Astros (5/1) round out the top five. 

It’s unclear whether the Nationals would be willing to trade Scherzer, who turns 37 on Tuesday, within the division. But the Mets have a solid farm system and are in the hunt for pitching help, having just traded for former Rays starter Rich Hill.

The Nationals are in need of younger, promising pieces as their farm system ranked dead last by MLB.com prior to the season.

Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said the team had mapped out various scenarios for the team to be either buyers or sellers at the deadline. But the Nationals were just swept by the Baltimore Orioles and have now lost 10 of their last 13. 

Scherzer was scratched from his last start due to triceps discomfort, but he and the Nationals don’t view the injury as serious. Scherzer is 7-4 this season with a 2.83 ERA. He holds a no-trade clause, giving him the right to veto any deal.

According to Yahoo Sports, the Mets do plan to check in on Scherzer‘s availability. 

• Matthew Paras can be reached at mparas@washingtontimes.com.

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