Neftali Feliz, the pitcher who saved 72 games in 2010-11 and was on the mound for the best and arguably the worst moment in franchise history, was designated for assignment Friday after the Texas Rangers’ 8-2 loss.
The move creates spots on the 40-man and 25-man rosters for Matt Harrison, who will be reinstated Saturday.
Feliz was the American League Rookie of the Year in 2010, saving 40 games and another 32 in 2011. He also used a fastball that hit 100 mph and a slider that could be devastating at times to save seven postseason games.
He finished off the 2010 AL Championship Series with a strikeout of Alex Rodriguez, which rates as the biggest moment in franchise history. But Feliz could not close out Game 6 of the 2011 World Series, allowing a two-run game-tying triple to David Freese with the Rangers a strike away from the world championship.
“A tough call, mostly in the fact that Neftali has been on the mound for probably the greatest moments in franchise history,” Daniels said.
The Rangers will attempt to trade Feliz but would like him to accept assignment to the minors if he clears waivers. Daniels said that Feliz hasn’t been the same since needing Tommy John surgery after a transition to the rotation in 2012.
Feliz worked two scoreless innings against the Angels, hitting 95 mph and ending his outing by getting Freese to bounce into a double play in the eighth.
“My mentality is to keep pitching and keep doing my job,” said Feliz, who hopes to stay in the organization. “I feel good with everybody over here. I like it here. All my friends are here. I have great moments with this organization. I’m not thinking about leaving. Of course, I don’t know what will happen, but I’m happy here.”
Jeff Wilson, 817-390-7760