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Closer Neftali Feliz says he feels fine

5/15/2011

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Rangers closer Neftali Feliz saved both of the Rangers' wins during the Angels series after coming off the disabled list. But Feliz didn't look like his dominant self in either one, especially Sunday's ninth inning.

Feliz's command wasn't as sharp as normal and his fastball velocity topped out at 94 mph on the Rangers Ballpark in Arlington radar gun.

"I'm not worried about that," Feliz said through a translator. "I'm not worried about speed. I want to throw strikes and hit my spots. I won't throw my fastball at 99 or 100 every time out."

Feliz was not used on Saturday in a tie game in the ninth because manager Ron Washington said the reliever complained he was "cranky" and not quite loose. Feliz said that he was "tired" on Saturday, but felt better on Sunday.

The Rangers want to make sure they are careful with the 2010 AL rookie of the year. He's still just coming off the disabled list and being thrown back into pressure situations. He looked relieved more than anything when the game ended with the "strike-em-out, throw-em-out" double play on Sunday.

Still, even when Feliz isn't dominant, he usually gets the job done. He has saved all eight of his chances now in 2011 and has convered his last 19 save opportunities dating back to last season. That's one shy of his personal best of 20 from May 17 through July 31, 2010.