Neftali Feliz is in the minors. Keone Kela is human. Shawn Tolleson isn’t the closer, but merely the 9th-inning pitcher. And manager Jeff Banister remains uber-flexible.
Just another week in the wacky, mostly wonderful world of the Rangers’ bullpen.
Kela surrendered the game-losing homer to the Royals’ Salvador Perez in the 8th inning Sunday. So Kela was back in his 8th-inning role, leading to Tolleson? Yep, except that wasn’t the case Saturday when Banister bypassed him and Ross Ohlendorf and went with Tanner Scheppers in the 8th.
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Banister loves his catching slogans. But he’s obviously not a fan of permanent labels.
Scheppers’ success and Kela’s failure will likely lead to even more juggling late in games. For now, we think Tolleson gets handed the ball in the 9th.
Until – or maybe even after – Feliz returns from his rehab stint. He threw 24 pitches Saturday for AAA Round Rock, allowing a walk, a hit and an unearned run.
It’s hard to figure out how the Rangers have rebounded from that ugly April. And it’s even more difficult to decipher their bullpen identities.