Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 10/31/13
Closer Joe Nathan is waiting and wondering what the Texas Rangers are going to do about his option for 2014. But he knows what he'd like to do: Negotiate a multiyear deal. The Rangers have three days to either exercise Nathan's $9 million option for next season or cut him a check for $750,000 as a buyout. If the club decides to exercise the option, Nathan has the right to void it thanks to finishing at least 55 games in 2013. "I want at least two years," Nathan said Thursday. "The last couple of years, I think I've proven that I'm healthy. I think I've proven to lots of skeptics and critics that I can handle two-year deal or maybe two and an option." Texas has Joakim Soria, who has closed before, and Tanner Scheppers, who performed well in eight-inning relief, in the bullpen in 2014 and either one of those players could shift to the closer's role for not nearly the cost of Nathan. And he understands that. "I know they have a surplus of arms in the bullpen and I know the business side of it," Nathan said. "You're trying to get as much money as you can to strengthen your club, so they may want to spend that money somewhere else. They have some work to do to piece some holes together." But neither Soria nor Scheppers has the experience or track record of Nathan. The 38-year-old (he turns 39 on Nov. 22) had 43 saves and sported a 1.39 ERA with 73 strikeouts and 22 walks this past season. He's made the All-Star team in each of his two seasons in Texas.
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