Rangers exercise option on Nathan; Nathan declines player portion of option

Arlington, Texas — The Texas Rangers announced today that the club has exercised its portion of the 2014 contract option for right-handed pitcher Joe Nathan.

Following the exercising of the club option, the Rangers were informed that Nathan will decline the player portion of the 2014 contract option, making him a free agent.

Texas signed Nathan as a free agent to a two-year contract with a club option for 2014 in November 2011. Nathan received the player portion of the 2014 option due to the right-hander finishing 55 or more games in 2013 (61) and 100 or more games total in 2012-13 (123).  

Nathan, who turns 39 on November 22, went 6-2 with 43 saves and a 1.39 ERA (10 ER/64.2 IP) in 67 relief appearances for the Rangers this season.  It matched the second-highest save total ever by a Rangers pitcher, and his 1.39 ERA was the second-lowest single-season figure in team history (minimum 50.0 innings).  Nathan recorded his 300th career save on April 8 vs. Tampa Bay and ranks tied for 10th all-time with 341 saves, the most among active pitchers following the retirement of Mariano Rivera.

With the move, Texas has 33 players on its major league roster.