Brewers sign veteran reliever Neftali Feliz

Former Pittsburgh Pirates reliever Neftali Feliz has spent eight years in the majors, posting a 3.22 ERA, 1.104 WHIP and 8.5 strikeouts per nine innings
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

The Milwaukee Brewers have found their new closer via the free-agent market.

The Brewers signed veteran reliever Neftali Feliz to a one-year deal Thursday.

The contract is worth $5.35 million, and includes $1.5 million in performance bonuses for games and games finished.

Feliz, who turns 29 in May, has pitched eight years in the majors with Texas, Detroit and Pittsburgh. In 308 games — all but seven of those in relief — he has a 3.22 ERA, 1.104 WHIP and 8.5 strikeouts per nine innings over 343 1/3 innings pitched.

“We believe he has the capability to help anchor our young relief corps,” Brewers GM David Stearns said in a statement.

After trading Tyler Thornburg this offseason and Jeremy Jeffress at the deadline Milwaukee had the option to stay in-house, although there was little closing experience on the 40-man roster, but instead decided on Feliz, who has 99 career saves.

Feliz won American League Rookie of the Year in 2010 with the Rangers, posting 40 saves and allowing just 5.6 hits per nine innings. Feliz also was Texas’ closer in 2011, saving 32 games, but injuries — he had Tommy John surgery on Aug. 1, 2012 — cost him most of the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

Feliz had a 1.99 ERA and 13 saves in 30 games in 2014, but struggled in ’15 and was dealt to Detroit. He pitched last season for the Pirates, posting a 3.52 ERA and two saves in 62 games.

The Associated Press contributed to this report