Wilhelmsen Adds Even More Strength to Rangers Bullpen - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Wilhelmsen Adds Even More Strength to Rangers Bullpen



    Wilhelmsen Adds Even More Strength to Rangers Bullpen
    Seattle Mariners catcher Jesus Montero, center, celebrates with teammates, including closer Tom Wilhelmsen, left, after the final out against the Los Angeles Dodgers in a baseball game Friday, June 8, 2012, in Seattle. The Mariners won 1-0 in a six-pitcher combined no-hitter. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

    It's really crazy, and kind of the perfect example of how fluid MLB teams' bullpens can be, how the Rangers' bullpen was transformed on the fly last season.

    Early in the year, it was the weakness of the team, and a month and a half into the year, Neftali Feliz was out as the Rangers' closer in favor of Shawn Tolleson. For a good while, Tolleson was the only bright spot in the pen, then came the trade deadline.

    That's when Jon Daniels traded for Cole Hamels — and got Jake Diekman thrown in — and made an under-the-radar deal for Miami Marlins reliever Sam Dyson for third catcher Tomas Telis. It didn't take long for Diekman and Dyson to transform the Rangers' bullpen, along with the return of overworked youngster Keone Kela.

    From that point on, the Rangers had an end-game, and if their starters could get them six innings, they were a near lock to win the game.

    On Monday, the Rangers sent the disappointing, but talented Leonys Martin to Seattle for Tom Wilhelmsen, who beefs up the Rangers' bullpen even more. The veteran righty has a career ERA with Seattle under 3.00. He was elevated the Mariners' closer role where he converted on 13 of his 15 save chances.

    He won't be the Rangers' closer, but he adds another power arm to a group that is now full of them, and adds even more depth and stability to the back end of the game. It's a great trade for Jon Daniels & Co., and continues what he started roughly four months ago.