ARLINGTON -- It's been four years since Ryan Dempster has pitched in the postseason. He wants to get back.Dempster has spent each of the last nine years with the Cubs, who were 19 games out of first place in the NL Central on Wednesday. Now the right-hander is playing for a Rangers team that has led the AL West every day since April 9. Dempster, who was picked by the Rangers in the third round of the 1995 Draft, will start Thursday's series finale against the Angels. "It's kind of neat to get drafted by them when I was an 18-year-old kid and wind up pitching for them, going from fifth place to first place. That doesn't get to happen very often," Dempster said. "You're going out there trying to win a World Series. I'm looking forward to an opportunity here to do that." In his only postseason start, Dempster gave up four runs on four hits over 4 2/3 innings, striking out two and walking seven in a 7-2 loss to the Dodgers in Game 1 of the 2008 National League Division Series. Dempster, whose 2.25 ERA this season stands as the best by any pitcher in the American League, has a good chance to return to the postseason this year. "He's so happy to be here, and I'm equally glad to have him," manager Ron Washington said. "He'll be good support for my young pitching staff. They've been coddled. They've always had C.J. [Wilson] and Colby Lewis. Then, they had [only] Colby Lewis. Then, it was no more C.J. and no more Colby Lewis. It was just them. Now we got Dempster."
Rangers call up Olt, option Snyder to Triple-A
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers on Wednesday night called up infielder Mike Olt from Double-A Frisco and sent Brandon Snyder to Triple-A Round Rock. To make room for Olt on the 40-man roster, the Rangers put Colby Lewis on the 60-day disabled list.Olt, ranked by MLB.com as the No. 3 prospect in the Rangers' system, was hitting .287 with 27 home runs and 81 RBIs in 94 games for Double-A Frisco. He had a .399 on-base percentage and a .575 slugging percentage along with 99 strikeouts in 348 at-bats. "Obviously we wanted to get through the Trade Deadline and see how our roster looked," general manager Jon Daniels said. "We wanted to strengthen our bench, but as we looked at our trade options, nothing materialized that made sense for us. A lot of our scouts and player development staff think Mike may be able to fill a role for us and help us. He is going to get that opportunity." Olt will be in uniform on Thursday night and could make his Major League debut with left-hander C.J. Wilson on the mound for the Angels. Daniels said it's up to manager Ron Washington to decide how to use Olt, but he is expected to get more playing time than Snyder. "I would anticipate that Mike will get an opportunity to play," Daniels said. "Not on an everyday basis, but he'll get an opportunity. Olt, who was drafted in the supplemental first round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, is primarily a third baseman but can also play first base and right field as well as be used at designated hitter. Snyder was hitting .281 with three home runs and nine RBIs in 38 games. The Rangers announced the roster move after Wednesday's 11-10, 10-inning victory over the Angels.
Rangers option Perez to Triple-A Round Rock
ARLINGTON -- It didn't take long for the Rangers to call up Martin Perez again after his first big league stint. His second big league stint also didn't last long.After less than two weeks and just two outings, the Rangers on Wednesday optioned Perez to Triple-A Round Rock to make room on their 25-man Major League roster for the recently acquired Ryan Dempster.
Perez turned in his second straight quality start in the Rangers' loss to the Red Sox on July 24, taking a no-decision after giving up one run on five hits over six innings in that 2-1 defeat. He also threw a scoreless ninth inning during Tuesday's 6-2 loss to the Angels."He came in last night and did a good job," manager Ron Washington said Wednesday. "It's just a matter of when his time is, and it's not right now. But he understands that we won't hesitate to get him if something happens. The most important thing for him is that he pitches. He's young. He doesn't need to be sitting up here in the bullpen." After spending nearly a month in the big leagues after being recalled June 26, Perez was sent to Round Rock on July 18 before being called up five days later when Colby Lewis was lost for the rest of the season with a torn tendon in his right elbow. Perez is 5-5 with a 4.59 ERA with Round Rock this season. "He'll still have an opportunity to make his splash, but he'll be more on the scene coming into Spring Training next year," Washington said. He'll be coming in fighting for a job next year."
After mini-surge, Hamilton returns to No. 3 spot
ARLINGTON -- For the first time in five games, Josh Hamilton batted third Wednesday night.Hamilton was back in his usual spot in the Rangers' lineup after sitting out one game and spending the next three in what he called the "magic 5-hole." While batting fifth, Hamilton had four hits in 10 at-bats -- including his 29th home run Monday -- scored four runs, drew two walks and did not strike out. "He's our No. 3 hitter," manager Ron Washington said. "He's doing what he needs to be doing and recognizing pitches, so I want to get him going. When I put him fifth, it gave him an opportunity to think about some things. When he was in the third slot and things were going bad, he wasn't thinking. The fact that he wasn't there in the third slot made him think." Before moving to the fifth spot in the lineup, Hamilton was hitting .190 with seven home runs, 26 RBIs and 56 strikeouts since the beginning of June. He batted .344 with 12 home runs and 32 RBIs in May. "I'm just in a good position to make swings," Hamilton said. "That's what you want. It doesn't really matter about the result. I feel good as far as taking pitches, seeing pitches, and making sure you don't swing at bad ones, making sure you get strikes."
Feliz undergoes successful Tommy John surgery
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."
Class A Advanced right-hander Wilmer Font was promoted to Double-A Frisco on Wednesday. He is 2-5 with a 4.21 ERA with 109 strikeouts and 37 walks in 83 1/3 innings, tossing 6 1/3 scoreless innings over his last three outings, all out of the bullpen.
Double-A Frisco right-handers Joe Van Meter and Zach Osborne were moved to Class A Advanced Myrtle Beach on Wednesday, while Myrtle Beach right-hander Ben Henry and Frisco outfielder Val Majewski (hamstring) were placed on the disabled list.
Mark Lowe, who has been on the disabled list since June 29 with a strained intercostal muscle, will make his third rehab outing Thursday for Double-A Frisco and is expected to throw two innings. He has allowed four runs in two innings during the first two games of his rehab assignment.
Scott Feldman was named the Rangers' Player of the Month for July after going 3-0 with a 1.96 ERA, 14 strikeouts and one walk in 23 innings over four outings last month. David Murphy was named the 2012 Rangers Heart and Hustle Award winner by the Major League Baseball Players' Alumni Association. He received the award from Rangers Hall of Famer Jim Sundberg on the field before Wednesday's game.
Ryan Dempster will wear No. 46, while Robbie Ross will switch to No. 28.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. Christian Corona is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.