ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 11: Joe Nathan #36 of the Texas Rangers closes out the inning for the win against the Cleveland Indians at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on September 11, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Rick Yeatts/Getty Images)
Fans of the Texas Rangers saw a very uncharacteristic outing from Joe Nathan back on Thursday as the Rangers lost late in a game and missed out on a sweep over the Cleveland Indians.
Nathan didn't record an out, gave up four hits and three runs off two long balls and blew his first save since April 11 after converting 31 straight save opportunities.
After the game he used the feared words "dead arm" when speculating on what the problem could've been and why his command was off and velocity was down. He was given the weekend series against the Mariners off, coupled with Monday's off-day, and is now set to go tonight against the Los Angeles Angels have working three straight nights against the Indians last week.
The Rangers got fill-in closer work from Koji Uehara, but there's no question they're ready to give the keys back to Nathan, who has put up a 2.83 ERA with 33 saves, 70 strikeouts and just nine walks this season. He could get his first chance back on the mound in a matter of hours.