Neftali Feliz has replaced Frank Francisco as the Rangers closer less than a week into the season.
Manager Ron Washington explained that the club has seen enough after Francisco failed to hold a 3-1 lead in the ninth inning against the Mariners Saturday. It was Frankie's second blown save in three days.
“That just didn’t look like Frankie,” Washington said Sunday. “We haven’t seen that [closer] guy … and there’s no way we can go through this year without Frankie Francisco.”
In other words, the Rangers aren’t ready to give up on the 30-year-old Francisco. They just want him to "get himself together" -- and that'll happen by letting him pitch middle relief and appear in less criticial game situations.
Franciso recorded 25 saves in his first full season as the team's closer in 2009.
Feliz, 21, has appeared in 23 major league games. He had two saves for the Rangers last season.
-- Ray Buck