But Feliz said Friday that he would not want to return to the bullpen. An All-Star closer in 2010, Feliz was 3-1 with a 3.16 ERA before being sidelined with right elbow inflammation. He saved 40 games two seasons ago, the most by a rookie.
"It's up to them but, of course, I wouldn't like [returning to the bullpen]," Feliz said through a translator. "My mindset is that I'll start and come back to the rotation."
Feliz said that he began feeling something wrong in his throwing arm a couple of starts ago. He's thrown more than 100 pitches in each of his last three starts, including last Friday against the Astros, when Feliz allowed three hits and one run over 4 2/3 innings, striking out six and walking five in a 4-1 win. He was replaced by Robbie Ross after issuing his second walk of the fifth inning and placed on the DL three days later.
"He's making progress," said Texas manager Ron Washington. "I've seen that erraticness before, so it was a matter of if he could get back in sequence, could he get back in rhythm. He just couldn't get back in rhythm. I didn't know anything was wrong."
Washington also said that Feliz will travel with the team until he can begin throwing again, which Feliz hopes to be doing within three to four weeks. As for what Feliz's role will be upon his recovery, Washington would not speculate as to whether he would return to the rotation or the 'pen.
"First, Neftali has to get healthy," Washington said. "When we get to that point, we'll make that decision. That's what Neftali needs to focus on, not worrying about what he's going to do or not going to do. That's not even a conversation right now because he can't even pick up a ball."