Three Texas Rangers players applied for arbitration, and now two of them are settled into new deals avoiding the hearing. MLB.com reported on Jan. 17 that Neftali Feliz announced that he avoided arbitration with the Rangers.
Texas already locked up Matt Harrison to a long-term deal earlier in the week, which eliminated one of the cases.
Feliz was the most puzzling arbitration case, since he injured himself in 2012 after moving into the starting rotation and won't be back until the final months of the 2013 season. Since Texas no longer looks at him as a starter, his value as an injured player was questionable at best.
Texas found value in the player and signed him to a new one-year deal worth $2.9 million. That seems like a lot from a player that may only play for two months. Part of it might stem from his early contributions. In his rookie season, Feliz was the AL Rookie of the Year with 40 saves and then saved 32 more games the next season to move up to fourth on the all-time saves leader board for the Rangers.
While Feliz loved his role as the closer, Texas signed Joe Nathan to take over the role and moved Feliz into the starting lineup. The move backfired when his arm gave out and he underwent Tommy John surgery in August 2012.
With Feliz and Harrison locked up, only David Murphy remains as an arbitration possibility. No Rangers player has ever gone to an arbitration hearing since 2000.