Neftali Feliz pitches well in rehab start

May, 4, 2011
5/04/11
7:48
PM CT
FRISCO, Texas -- Rangers closer Neftali Feliz threw 22 pitches in one inning of work, allowing one hit and striking out three in a rehab stint for Class AA Frisco on Wednesday night.

"It felt good," Feliz said through an interpreter. "My arm started to feel good, but when I wanted to locate my fastball I could."

Feliz has been on the disabled list since April 23 with right shoulder inflammation, something that bothered him when the season began. Feliz said after his outing that he's ready to return to the Rangers' bullpen, most likely Friday when the team returns home to begin a series against the New York Yankees.

Feliz started the inning with a 93 mile-per-hour fastball that was low and inside to leadoff hitter Blake Tekotte. Feliz allowed a single to right on a 2-2 pitch.

But Feliz responded by striking out the next three hitters. He got Jaff Decker swinging, Kyle Blanks swinging on a 1-2 pitch and James Darnell looking on a fastball to end the inning.

Feliz's fastball had plenty of pop and was in the mid-90s on most pitches. He threw one pitch in the dirt -- a 1-2 pitch to Decker --and two more were a little high.

Feliz's return will be a welcome site for the Rangers, who have seen his replacements struggle in the closer's role in his absence.

"I'm hurt, but it happens on every team with the bullpen struggling," Feliz said. "We just got to keep working hard to help the team."
Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Adrian Beltre
BA HR RBI R
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OTHER LEADERS
HRA. Beltre 19
RBIA. Beltre 77
RA. Beltre 79
OPSA. Beltre .879
WC. Lewis 10
ERAC. Lewis 5.18
SOY. Darvish 182