Breaking News: Joe Nathan Signs with Rangers
The Rangers and Joe Nathan have to a 2 year, 14.5 million dollar contract, which includes a 9 million dollar option.
The rumor in play is that the Rangers will make Nathan their closer and move Neftali Feliz from the closer’s role to the rotation. The Rangers appear to be very good at this, having converted both C.J. Wilson and Alexi Ogando from relievers to starters in the last few years.
The 36-year old Nathan was one of the best closers in the game from 2004-2009, averaging a 1.87 ERA, 0.934 WHIP, 11.1 K/9, and 41 saves a year during that 6-year span. By comparison, Mariano Rivera’s numbers during that same time period? 1.90, 0.936, 8.7 and 40. However, Nathan missed the entire 2010 season to Tommy John Surgery, and struggled through a rough 2011 in which he was replaced in early April by Matt Capps in the closer’s role.
Personally, I think this is too risky a move for someone with Nathan’s age and recent injury past – and there’s an inherent risk in moving Feliz, although it was bound to happen sooner or later. What do you think?