Thursday, March 24, 2011
Texas Rangers: Neftali Feliz Will Remain The Team's Closer
Of course, that hasn't stopped fan from piling on the team for not giving him the chance to be a part of the rotation. Not sure if they were thinking he'd be another version, a younger version, of Cliff Lee. Seems to me that expectation is a little much to put on a young man who's only in his first few seasons in the big leagues.
So, with that decision announced just a little while ago, the rotation sets up as follows:
According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, Feliz will pitch against the San Diego Padres tonight in Surprize, Arizona but is expected to pitch the ninth inning instead of being the starter.
This is the right move for the Texas Rangers moving forward. No matter how many fans want to grumble about it and talk about how Feliz was going to be the next "star," there was nothing to prove he could go six to seven innings every fifth day.
He's never been a starter in the big leagues and he's too young for this to be an "experiment."
After coming off an American League Championship, why mess with success? Why change something when it got them as far as it did?
The argument a closer isn't as important as a starter is one that can be debated. While a closer means nothing when your team is up five runs or more, coming in with a one run lead and the game on the line takes a mentality a lot of pitchers can't handle.
Feliz did exactly that all last season.
This debate is going to be hotly contested over the next few months. Make no mistake about it, the first time Feliz blows a save, this argument will be brought up by every media outlet and every fan.
As Ron Washington says, "that's the way baseball go."