DALLAS -- Left-handed reliever remains a significant need for the Rangers. General manager Jon Daniels would like to fill that hole with Darren Oliver. Daniels said he has had preliminary discussions with Oliver's agent, Jeff Frye, about re-signing the veteran, and Daniels hopes to get something done soon. The sides are expected to meet and talk here at the Winter Meetings. "We haven't talked specifics. ... We probably need to," Daniels said. "Hopefully we'll be the last team he'll play for."
Oliver was 5-5 with a 2.29 ERA that was the second lowest in the American League for a left-handed reliever with at least 40 innings pitched. Oliver turned 41 in October, but he and his wife feel he is good to go for one more season. They make their home in the Metroplex. "Obviously, Darren loves playing for the Rangers," Frye said. "We've had some other teams interested in him. After the Rangers came so close this past season, mama gave her blessing for Darren to go out and get a ring somewhere." The Rangers also remain interested in signing Michael Gonzalez, their second left-handed reliever in the playoffs. He recently had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee, but the Rangers have been told he should be ready by Spring Training. Daniels is hoping to meet with Gonzalez's agent, Scott Boras, at the Winter Meetings. The Rangers are not committed to adding a left-hander, but upgrading their bullpen is a priority. "If the best guy is a right-hander, we'll bring in a right-hander," Daniels said.