Rangers Sign Joe Nathan

The Rangers' 2012 pitching staff just took shape and so did the rest of their offseason. The defending American League champions agreed with Joe Nathan on a two-year deal that includes a team option for 2014. Dave Pepe of Pro Agents, Inc. negotiated a $14.75MM guarantee for the four-time All-Star. Nathan will earn $7MM in 2012 and 2013 and the club holds a $9MM option for 2014 ($750K buyout).  Nathan can earn up to $1MM in incentives based on games finished, reports Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, and the 2014 option can vest based on games finished in '13.

Joe Nathan

The Rangers announced that Neftali Feliz is finally headed to Texas' rotation. After successfully converting C.J. Wilson and Alexi Ogando into starters, the Rangers will attempt to bolster their rotation with a converted reliever for a third consecutive spring. However, the Rangers aren't out on starters, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. There's less pressure for the Rangers to over-spend on Wilson or another free agent arm now that they have an established arm at the back of their bullpen and five starters in Feliz, Ogando, Colby Lewis, Derek Holland and Matt Harrison.

Nathan, who turns 37 tomorrow, missed the entire 2010 season while recovering from Tommy John surgery. The Houston native posted a 4.84 ERA with 8.7 K/9, 2.8 BB/9 and a 34.9% ground ball rate in 44 2/3 innings this past season, saving 14 games. His average fastball velocity dropped to 92.3 mph in 2011 after sitting in the 93-95 mph range from 2002-09.

Nathan, an unranked free agent, won't cost the Rangers a draft pick and his former team, the Twins, won't obtain a compensatory pick. The Twins declined a $12.5MM option for Nathan after the regular season, but maintained interest in their longtime closer. 

MLBTR's Tim Dierkes ranked Nathan 48th on his list of top 50 free agents. Bryan Grosnick breaks the move down from a fantasy baseball perspective at CloserNews.com.

T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com first reported the deal and added specifics. Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, Jon Heyman of SI.com and Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram added detail. Photo courtesy Icon SMI.


Leave a Reply

215 Comments on "Rangers Sign Joe Nathan"


Lastings
3 years 9 months ago

Now what? -Sandy Alderson

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

I got Broxton going to the Mets. 

3 years 9 months ago

Broxton is a good fit

icedrake523
3 years 9 months ago

Probably Brad Lidge. He’ll probably pitch as well as Nathan except is guaranteed to blow every save against the Phillies. But that’s nothing we’re not used to by now.

3 years 9 months ago

K-ROD!!!!!

diehardmets
3 years 9 months ago

Good signing, particularly if they plan to move Neftali to the rotation.

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

Nice, that makes me 0/5 or something. 

WrigleyTerror37
3 years 9 months ago

can you check to see how you are doing in that?

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago
Tko11
Tko11
3 years 9 months ago

There is a link to the standings on the right side of the page under MLBTR Features.

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

Yep, look that way —>
Free Agent Contest Leaderboard under MLBTR Features

wickedkevin
3 years 9 months ago

Always comes up as a white, blank page after I log in.

CAD_Monkey
3 years 9 months ago

This puts me at .200, but at least I’m “hitting” better than Adam Dunn for the moment.

renegadeisback
3 years 9 months ago

Damn, really wanted the Jays to sign him.

Shawnthemon
3 years 9 months ago

He might get a first place vote next year for the MVP

DarthVader87
3 years 9 months ago

Must be serious about Feliz starting this season.

inleylandwetrust
3 years 9 months ago

If they don’t resign CJ are they planning on moving Feliz to the rotation? If not, that is one stacked bullpen.

EDIT: Nevermind, posted before it says Feliz likely going into the rotation

3 years 9 months ago

Joe Nathan, really?

vtadave
3 years 9 months ago

Yeah, really.

Christopher David
3 years 9 months ago

If they’re going to move Feliz to the rotation, they’ll have a few guys that could close now, and if he doesn’t work out as a starter, they’ll just have one hell of a bullpen.

Fols
3 years 9 months ago

Hmmmm See ya Joe. Good Luck in Texas

Dynasty22
3 years 9 months ago

I’m not so sure how getting Nathan means Feliz to the rotation. Let’s see what C.J Wilson does.

3 years 9 months ago

And let’s see what Joe Nathan does.

It’s basically one big question mark being put in the back of their bullpen and creating another in the rotation. It could work out for both, but they should still go after Wilson and/or trade another starter for a front line starter.

johnnycomelately9
3 years 9 months ago

If the Rangers don’t put Adams in the Closer role they are dumb.  There is a great chance he’ll be the #1 ranked closer after 2012.  I’ve watched Adams pitch for 3 years

Alex
3 years 9 months ago

I’m inclined to agree. Nathan will have to earn the closer’s role over Adams, and I don’t know if he’ll be able to do it.

TXHC
3 years 9 months ago

Feliz was going to the rotation regardless of what happens with CJ.

TXHC
3 years 9 months ago

Feliz was going to the rotation regardless of what happens with CJ.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Feliz to the rotation is definitely a plus. If Nathan can regain his form, this could really help the Rangers. Question now is what’s the cost.

3 years 9 months ago

Good buy-low option for closer, and it’s not like Adams couldn’t step in if Nathan falters. And it’s made even better by the fact that it highlights a Feliz move to the rotation.

Joey Doughnuts
3 years 9 months ago

Wow, I didn’t even realize Nathan was a FA. That really says a lot about how far he has fallen over the years.

twins33
3 years 9 months ago

He had a 12.5 million dollar option that the Twins declined due to the recent TJ surgery.  Can’t pay that much when you don’t know what you’re going to get.  He was decent this season though and got better as it went on.

Joey Doughnuts
3 years 9 months ago

I don’t question why they declined, I’m just saying Nathan went from one of the best closers in baseball to pretty much an afterthought, at least to me.

twins33
3 years 9 months ago

Ah, I was just letting you know how he became a FA.

grownice
3 years 9 months ago

AA should sign Broxton asap, id rather him not trade for a closer , Broxton is the best/cheapest option out now.

diehardmets
3 years 9 months ago

Who knows, maybe he can swindle the A’s for Bailey (though if there’s one GM in baseball who I think could match wits with AA, it’s Beane).

NomarGarciaparra
3 years 9 months ago

LOL at everyone acting as if AA is God.

grownice
3 years 9 months ago

 Jealousy.

vtadave
3 years 9 months ago

Not quite, but close.

Sincerely,

God

TXHC
3 years 9 months ago

Broxton needs surgery.

TXHC
3 years 9 months ago

Broxton needs surgery.

Chewtoy123
3 years 9 months ago

But I don’t want Feliz in the rotation. What about what I want?!

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

damn I’m doing terrible in this competition!!!

sportsnut969
3 years 9 months ago

WOW did not expect this cannot wait to see the $ amount here.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 9 months ago

Good signing for the Rangers. Should be at a fair price and this allows them to bolster their rotation.

inleylandwetrust
3 years 9 months ago

Kind of surprising he got a 2 year deal