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Washington Complimentary of Mendez's Arm

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images
    Roman Mendez #55 of the Texas Rangers throws against the Oakland Athletics in the seventh inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on July 25, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

    Back in 2010, Alexi Ogando came out of nowhere to become one of baseball's premier setup men after a midseason call-up and was an integral part of the Rangers' first World Series run.

    This year, the Rangers won't be going to any World Series, but they might have found a gem in the midst of a lost season in the form of Roman Mendez.

    The right-handed reliever, who just turned 24, has impressed since being called up with 16 big-league games now under his belt. On the season, Mendez has a 1.47 ERA with 12 strikeouts in his 18 1/3 innings. The one flaw so far has been his control, as he's issued 10 walks, but he usually gets out of the jams he creates for himself.

    In fact, over the past five appearances, he's not allowed a run and has given up just two hits. Rangers manager Ron Washington said this week that if closer Neftali Feliz is unavailable, as he was Wednesday after pitching two innings on Tuesday, that Mendez would be his closer.

    “He’s the only power arm I’ve got down there [aside from Feliz],” Washington said of Mendez.

    In seasons like this, teams have to look for positives, and it appears they have a big positive in Mendez, who should be a piece of the Rangers' bullpen in 2015.