According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, the Milwaukee Brewers are nearing an agreement with reliever Neftali Feliz on an undisclosed contract. Feliz spent last season with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Feliz, 28, was signed out of the Dominican Republic by the Atlanta Braves in 2005 and broke into the majors with the Texas Rangers in 2009 after they acquired him in the Mark Teixeira trade. Feliz quickly became a dominant reliever, earning the 2010 AL Rookie of the Year honors and becoming an All Star that same year. Feliz was dominant in Texas for six and half years, but was ultimately designated for assignment by the team after a shaky 2015, and signed with the Detroit Tigers.
After struggling with the Tigers for just half a season, Feliz joined the Pirates, who helped reinvent himself and led him to his best season in two years. Feliz went 4-2 with a 3.52 ERA in 62 appearances with the Pirates, and saw his strikeout numbers rise to 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings, his highest total since his rookie year.
Feliz had been rumored to be a top backup option for teams who missed out on Aroldis Chapman and Kenley Jansen, but ultimately took until now to secure a deal. Should Feliz finish his deal with Milwaukee, he could be in strong position to close, after the team dealt former closers Jeremy Jeffress (to the Texas Rangers) and Tyler Thornburg (to the Boston Red Sox). Feliz already owns 99 career saves, and a transition back to the closer role where he was dominant in Texas, could be in the cards.null