ARLINGTON, Texas — The news of the acquisition of Ryan Dempster on Tuesday was tempered by the loss of right-hander Neftali Feliz.
Feliz will undergo Tommy John surgery on Wednesday after an MRI revealed he had torn his right ulnar collateral ligament.
He started last Monday in Triple A but told the team a couple of days later that his arm was sore. He was scratched from a Sunday start because of a sore elbow and the MRI followed.
Feliz has been on the disabled list since May because of a sprained UCL.
The club believes that Feliz can make a full recovery and hopes to have him back next season.
“We’ve known about it for a couple of days,” Texas general manager Jon Daniels said. “We figured we might beg for forgiveness from you guys (the media) for not telling you right away since we didn’t handicap us at all in the trade market. Obviously it’s a blow for him and for the club.”
Feliz is the second member of the Opening Day rotation the club has lost this year to arm surgery. Last week Opening Day starter Colby Lewis had surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon.
The Rangers got 157 starts from their Opening Day rotation last year. This season the Opening Day five has made 71 of the club’s first 102 starts.
Feliz was attempting to make the transition from closer to rotation member this season. He was off to a solid start, going 3-1 with a 3.16 ERA in seven starts. His arm began bothering him in a May 18 start against Houston. That would be the last start he would make as he went on the DL on May 21, signaling the first roster move the club made during the season.