Rangers acquire lefty Freeman from Cardinals

Reliever posted a 2.61 ERA over 44 games during the 2014 season

Rangers acquire lefty Freeman from Cardinals

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- The Rangers have acquired left-handed reliever Sam Freeman from the Cardinals for a player to be named or cash considerations.

The Rangers acquired Freeman with the idea of having him in their Opening Day bullpen.

"That's our expectation," general manager Jon Daniels said. "He's got some big league time and a very good arm. He has had some success with the Cardinals and a good reputation as a teammate and a person. We look forward to getting him in here."

Freeman said he's coming into Rangers camp to compete and isn't taking for granted he'll be on the Opening Day roster.

"Well, you know, it's not set in stone," Freeman said. "I'm not in a position to where I can take anything for granted. I'll just go out and continue to get outs and hopefully when Opening Day comes, I'll have earned a spot on the roster."

Freeman is from Texas. He played high school ball at Carrollton Hebron before going on to North Central Texas College and the University of Kansas. The Cardinals drafted him in the 32nd round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft.

Freeman has been with the Cardinals in each of the past three seasons, appearing in a total of 81 games with a record of 3-2 and a 3.33 ERA. Last season, he pitched in 44 games and was 2-0 with a 2.61 ERA. He held right-handed hitters to a .195 average, although left-handers hit .298 off him.

Freeman was out of options and the Cardinals had extra left-handed pitching with Randy Choate and Kevin Siegrist in their bullpen.

"It really became a roster issue," Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak said. "Clearly we were going to take this down to the wire as best we could, but we also didn't want to find ourselves where we ultimately couldn't do something with Sam before it was just a waiver claim.

"We just didn't have any flexibility left. Obviously, we would have liked to have kept him, but it just wasn't possible. Clearly if we had put him on waivers, he was going to be claimed. "

The Rangers have been looking for left-handed pitching since the beginning of camp. They have already released Joe Beimel and Michael Kirkman and sent Martire Garcia to Minor League camp. Alex Claudio is still in camp, but this seriously diminishes his chances of making the team.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.