MLB 2011: Texas Rangers' Bullpen in Shambles

Adam BernacchioAnalyst IIIApril 28, 2011

They say things happen in threes, right?

Well, unfortunately for the Texas Rangers’ bullpen, they have fallen victim to the theory of three. First they lost Mason Tobin with a right ulnar collateral ligament inflammation. Then they lost closer Neftali Feliz to right shoulder inflammation. Now they have lost set-up man Darren O’Day.


O'Day is the latest Ranger reliever to go on the disabled list.

The Rangers placed O’Day on the 60-day DL because he needs surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left hip. According to ESPN Dallas, O’Day had been pitching with the injury for a while now and the pain finally got to be too much for the submarine-style reliever.

Now what do the Rangers do?

The only reliable relievers the Rangers have in the 'pen are gray beards Arthur Rhodes and Darren Oliver. They also have hand-me-downs Brett Tomko and Dave Bush in the 'pen as well. In other words, yikes.

The Rangers are going to have to rely on young guys like Pedro Strop (pitching very well) and Cody Eppley. The Rangers will also have Ryan Tucker, who they called up from Triple-A Round Rock.

For me, all of these bullpen issues stem from all the way back to this winter when they failed to sign Cliff Lee or find his replacement.

When the Rangers lost out on Lee, it forced them to look to internal options. One of those options was Feliz. I am not saying Feliz’s shoulder injury is a result of being stretched out as a starter this spring, because I don’t have any medical proof of that. But I am confident in saying it didn’t help.

While the Rangers didn’t go with Feliz as a starter, they did go with Alexi Ogando to fill Lee’s spot in the rotation. Ogando has pitched well for Texas as a starter, but the Rangers did lose a valuable arm in the pen.

Not being able to re-sign Lee set off a domino effect and now, a month into the season, the Rangers are feeling the impact of that move. There is no doubt they are going to have to look outside the organization to improve their bullpen in the future.

Relievers who could be available to them in the future could be Heath Bell, Mike Adams, David Aardsma, Matt Capps, or Joel Hanrahan.

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