ARLINGTON -- Rangers right-hander Neftali Feliz had successful Tommy John surgery on his right elbow Wednesday. He will miss the remainder of this season and could return next summer.
In his first season as a member of the Rangers' rotation, Feliz was 3-1 with a 3.16 ERA in eight appearances, including seven starts, before being placed on the disabled list May 21 with right elbow inflammation. He made three Minor League rehab starts and was scheduled to make a fourth Sunday in Memphis for Triple-A Round Rock before the Rangers announced that Feliz would require season-ending surgery to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. It was performed by Dr. Keith Meister.
"It had nothing to do with whether I threw as a starter or a closer," Feliz said. "I was a starter before being a closer. The doctor told me it was something that was there already a little bit."
Feliz allowed one unearned run in two innings, striking out four and walking two in his first rehab start with Double-A Frisco on July 16 before surrendering four runs, one of them earned, in 1 2/3 innings for Round Rock July 20. His last rehab outing was an encouraging one as Feliz tossed three scoreless innings for Round Rock on July 24. But it proved to be his last game of the season as he became the second Rangers starter to be lost for the rest of the year, joining Colby Lewis, who had surgery to repair a torn tendon in his right elbow.
"It's hard, but it's not impossible," Feliz said of the rehab process. "It makes you feel bad, but there's nothing you can do about it. It has to be what it has to be. I just have to follow my rehab and try to get ready the best way."