Jason Vargas still on the mend …

Jason Vargas would figure to be one of the more attractive arms leading up to the non-waiver Trade Deadline. He’s a free agent at season’s end, he’d cost the pro-rated share of $8.5 million this season, he’s on an Angels team that enters the second half nine games out of the final playoff spot and, well, he’s a solid left-handed starting pitcher.

Problem: He may still be on the disabled list by the time the non-waiver Trade Deadline comes and goes.

Vargas has been on the shelf since June 21 with a blood clot near his left armpit area. He had surgery, took two weeks off from throwing a baseball and has progressed since then, currently playing catch from 140 feet. But he has yet to get off a mound, and after he does that, he’ll likely have to go on a rehab assignment.

And the Trade Deadline is 13 days away.

“He’s got a little more work to do long-tossing before he can get on the mound,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “We’ll evaluate him through this next week.”

– Alden Gonzalez

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