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The rich get richer: AL-leading Rangers sign Roy Oswalt

May 29, 2012, 4:40 PM EDT

oswalt face getty Getty Images

Reports all day have said Roy Oswalt was close to choosing a new team and the Rangers were heavy favorites, and now Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News writes that Texas has indeed signed the 34-year-old free agent.

Fraley quotes “an individual familiar with the process” as saying it’s a done deal.

Oswalt has been linked to the Rangers, Dodgers, Phillies, Brewers, Orioles, and Red Sox, but Texas gives him the best possible combination of a sure-fire contender, a locale close to his Mississippi home, and (presumably) the most money.

Oswalt gained leverage in recent days with Roy Halladay and Ted Lilly landing on the disabled list with shoulder injuries, and if he’s indeed signing with the Rangers he’ll step into the rotation spot created by Neftali Feliz‘s sprained elbow. It’s unclear how much time Oswalt will need to be game-ready, but Feliz is expected to miss the remainder of the first half and could shift back to the bullpen once healthy.

For now Scott Feldman is filling in for Feliz, but Oswalt threw 139 innings with a 3.69 ERA and 93/33 K/BB ratio for the Phillies last season and if he can avoid a recurrence of back problems would be a major upgrade over Feldman.

UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal of confirms Fraley’s initial report and says Oswalt’s deal is worth between $5 million and $6 million.

  1. dawglb - May 29, 2012 at 4:47 PM

    He’s washed up. He’ll be on the DL before August is over.

    • vallewho - May 29, 2012 at 4:54 PM

      I was about to say…schedule the DL announcement.

  2. WhenMattStairsIsKing - May 29, 2012 at 4:50 PM

    He’s going to kick some major booty.

    • 18thstreet - May 29, 2012 at 4:55 PM

      Really? Have you seen what going from the AL West to the NL East did for Gio Gonzalez? What’s the opposite of that?

      • 18thstreet - May 29, 2012 at 4:58 PM

        I think there’s every reason to believe that Oswalt’s ERA will be at least a full run higher than it was with the Phillies.

      • WhenMattStairsIsKing - May 29, 2012 at 5:00 PM

        On that team, with his skill set, despite recent injuries, I do believe he’ll have a good year, yes.

      • 32bigg - May 29, 2012 at 5:04 PM

        Sure, but he won’t have to pitch against the Rangers, far and away the best offensive team in that division and baseball.

  3. themuddychicken - May 29, 2012 at 4:57 PM

    He’s going to be somewhere between being washed up and kicking some major booty.

  4. fhuizar - May 29, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    Damaged Goods.

  5. astrosfan75956 - May 29, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    At least he doesn’t have to face the Rangers lineup.

  6. leerosenthall - May 29, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    Good for him. Unlike a lot of Philly fans, I really like “Little Roy,” and the Rangers certainly LOOK like the team to beat in the AL. (I still can’t believe they lost the WS last year, but it just goes to show, whoever gets hot at the end of the season can win it all.) And I’m also glad the Phils aren’t panicking and signing another pitcher just yet, even with Doc going on the DL for an extended period.

    • xmatt0926x - May 29, 2012 at 5:26 PM

      lee, it’s not just Philly fans. It’s Phillies executives and some of his ex-teammates too. It was written on either last week or a couple weeks ago that some of his teammates and management didn’t like his “disconnect” from the team. They also didn’t like his extremely quick exit after they lost to the Cards in last years playoffs. Let’s face it. Team officials likely didn’t like his demolition work on the tractor while being out with a bad back. Beat writer Matt Gelb also wrote a while back that several of his teammates found him to be aloof. Philly was never his real choice of teams to be traded to and he seems to have shown that while with the team.

      • leerosenthall - May 29, 2012 at 6:23 PM

        I actually didn’t know any of that, so thanks for the explanation. That makes sense. Maybe he was aloof or a dick, for all I know, but I’ll never forget his being willing to go out and play left field when they’d run out of position players in an extra-innings game his first season with the team.

      • sasquash20 - May 29, 2012 at 11:58 PM

        It is a smart move by the Rangers. Roy is a solid pitcher who should help Texas. If he doesn’t it only cost 5 million which in today’s baseball world is almost nothing.

        I also heard a lot about Roy Oswalt not fitting in with the Phillies. The Phillies have been a very tight group the last 5 years so that tells me something about Oswalt. Not saying he is a bad guy but he might be a little different. Also I think when he hurt his back clearing his prooperty after the tornadoes, I think that rubbed some guys the wrong way. It isn’t like he didn’t have the money to get that work done. 24 Other guys on the Phillies were busting their butts trying to win and maybe thought he wasn’t as committed. Any how good luck Texas, I think my Phillies are just too banged up to make a run this year.

    • beefytrout - May 29, 2012 at 5:38 PM

      If it makes you feel any better, they came closer to winning it but eventually losing it than any other team in history. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to sob in the corner after reminding myself of that horrible night.

  7. proudlycanadian - May 29, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    I guess that those “folks” who said that he was probably going to sign with the Rangers were actually “reliable sources”.

    • 18thstreet - May 29, 2012 at 5:24 PM

      I think they were sources familiar with Oswalt’s thinking who did not want to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the negotiations.

    • Utley's Hair - May 29, 2012 at 5:40 PM

      That’s not necessarily true. A broken clock is right twice a day.

  8. billymc75 - May 29, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    Age hasn’t stopped Pettite or Moyer

    • Tick - May 29, 2012 at 5:47 PM

      Age hasn’t stopped Moyer. Getting shelled has stopped Moyer.

      • txnative61 - May 29, 2012 at 8:26 PM

        And how often has that happened in his career? Like a bad habit he keeps showing back up.

  9. gottagotowork99 - May 29, 2012 at 6:14 PM

    How does this signing fit your cliche headline? Dude was getting nerve blocks before he pitched last year. I wouldn’t want Oswalt as my #5 even if I was a Cubs fan.

  10. williestar8 - May 29, 2012 at 9:08 PM

    He has lost at least 5 mph on his fastball, so he’ll hit 92-93 once or twice a game. He will also throw 65 mph curve balls that HAVE been effective pitches for him. Will need 4 weeks+ in minors before joining Rangers. What is the “Secret Sauce” here? Nolan Ryan likes Roy Oswalt….two country boys.

  11. dannythebisforbeast - May 29, 2012 at 9:08 PM

    Running a front end loader and moving wreckage from a tornado when your on the DL would upset me if I was GM. Especially when your stupid rich and can pay someone to do it and get yourself healthy. Philly fans never gave him a problem but I think most found that whole situation curious to say the least.

  12. jason9696 - May 29, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    If you’re not a Rangers fan. This isn’t great news.

  13. dirtyharry1971 - May 29, 2012 at 11:32 PM

    texas is so good they really dont need him

  14. drewsylvania - May 29, 2012 at 11:44 PM

    Yahoo has this as a minor-league deal. I can safely call BS, right?

  15. streatordave - May 30, 2012 at 10:07 AM

    They took a flyer on him, because they can. As said this is not much of a risk & could have an upside for the Rangers. With Weaver going down, this can not be good news for the Angels.

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