Neftali Feliz already cleared to begin throwing program

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When the Rangers placed Neftali Feliz on the disabled list last week, they said his injury was minor. They said he’d be back within two weeks.

So far, it looks like they’re going to be right.

According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, Feliz was cleared to begin a throwing program on Wednesday morning and played catch comfortably at a distance of 90 feet in the afternoon.

The 22-year-old closer is eligible to return to the Rangers’ bullpen on May 6 and the Texas training staff is confident that he will be ready to rock by then.

Feliz has a 1.08 ERA through eight relief appearances this season and has successfully converted his first five save opportunities. Darren Oliver and Arthur Rhodes have been handling the ninth inning in his absence.

Texas Rangers ink free-agent ace Jacob deGrom to 5-year deal

Jacob deGrom
USA Today
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ARLINGTON, Texas — Free-agent ace Jacob deGrom and the Texas Rangers agreed to a $185 million, five-year contract Friday.

The two-time Cy Young Award winner leaves the New York Mets after nine seasons – the past two shortened by injuries.

After making his first start last season in early August, deGrom went 5-4 with a 3.08 ERA in 11 outings. He helped the Mets reach the playoffs, then opted out of his contract to become a free agent.

Texas announced the signing Friday night after the 34-year-old deGrom passed his physical. A person with direct knowledge of the deal disclosed the financial terms to The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the club did not announce those details.

“We are thrilled that Jacob deGrom has decided to become a Texas Ranger,” executive vice president and general manager Chris Young said in a statement. “Over a number of seasons, Jacob has been a standout major league pitcher, and he gives us a dominant performer at the top of our rotation. One of our primary goals this offseason is to strengthen our starting pitching, and we are adding one of the best.”

Texas went 68-94 last season and then hired Bruce Bochy as its new manager. The Rangers’ six straight losing seasons are their worst skid since the franchise moved from Washington in 1972.

The Rangers were big spenders in free agency last offseason, signing Corey Seager ($325 million, 10 years) and second baseman Marcus Semien ($175 million, seven years).