Feliz saying he wants to be a closer

Rangers pitcher Neftali Feliz told a reporter from USA Today before Sunday’s game that he doesn’t want to be a starting pitcher anymore.

“I spent most of spring training as a starter and I enjoyed it,” Feliz said told Jorge Ortiz. “But I’m a closer now, and God willing I’ll remain a closer the rest of my career. I made the decision that I won’t start anymore.”

Feliz apparently thinks his work as a starter this spring led to the shoulder inflammation that put him on the disabled list.

“The team has told me that next year I would still have the chance to start, but I don’t want to do it anymore,” Feliz said. “This year my arm didn’t feel good after they moved me from the rotation back to closing, so I don’t want to go through that again and risk the same thing happening.”

Feliz is expected to come off the disabled list on Friday.

Rangers general manager Jon Daniels responded to the report by saying:

“It’s not something we’re looking at right now. He’s the closer this year and we’ll address 2012 once 2011 is over. Our feelings on the topic haven’t changed. We’ll take his feelings, as well as team need and other factors, into consideration over the winter.

“He actually makes a pretty good case for starting by suggesting relieving is more physically demanding. We’ll look at that in the off-season.

“My understanding is Neftali had what he felt was normal soreness for part of spring but didn’t feel it was worth mentioning to the medical staff until he tightened up in the cold in NY. We’ve been very cautious with him since that came to light.”

1 Comment

If my memory serves right, this is how past great relievers became closets such as Dennis Eckersly anfd Mike Marshall.

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