Does Nathan signing hurt Neftali's value? 

November, 22, 2011
11/22/11
3:55
PM ET
I love what the Texas Rangers did in signing Joe Nathan to be their closer, thus moving Neftali Feliz to the rotation (though a year too late!). This bold move makes the team better as it seeks a third consecutive trip to the World Series, and there is certainly value to be had here for fantasy baseball owners as well.

[+] EnlargeNathan
Jerry Lai/US PresswireJoe Nathan posted a .207 batting-average against and was a perfect 11-for-11 in save opportunities after the All-Star break in 2011.
Nathan was arguably fantasy's top closer from 2004-09 (yes, even better than the exalted Mariano Rivera). Nobody had more saves during that span, and Nathan also had a 1.87 ERA over those six seasons (Rivera's was 1.90) and plenty of strikeouts. Of course, Tommy John surgery ruined his 2010 season and on the surface, his 2011 season as well.

Ah, but look a bit closer at that 4.84 ERA over 44 2/3 innings. Nathan's WHIP was 1.16. He held left-handed hitters to a .198 batting-average against. His ERA after a rough April was 3.53, and I'm not particularly concerned about the seven home runs allowed (one per month after April). It's major surgery. The guy is 37. He brought a good portion of his strikeout rate back with him.

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