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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Rangers 'cautiously optimistic' Colby Lewis is healthy and will make roster

By on 1/21/2014 07:00:00 PM

Texas Rangers starting pitcher Colby Lewis has not pitched in the Major Leagues since July of 2012 due to two surgeries. Lewis recently signed a Minor-League contract with the Rangers that includes an invitation to Spring Training for 2014, and all indications are that he is healthy and will likely make the Opening Day roster barring any setbacks.

By Red3biggs, via Wikimedia Commons
Fox Sports' Anthony Andro reports that Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux has seen recent video clips of Lewis throwing and like what he sees. Maddux said that Lewis looked "free and easy" in the video and has a good chance to make the starting rotation out of Spring Training.

Lewis had surgery on his pitching elbow in late July of 2012 and missed the end of the season. He started a Minor-League rehab assignment mid-2013 but suffered hip problems that led to another surgery in August. He has recovered and thrown well enough during the offseason to earn the contract and invitation.

Maddux is "cautiously optimistic" in Lewis's progress. He says that he will have Lewis consult with the Rangers' medical team often and Lewis will have to give honest reports on how he feels. Said Maddux,
"Great things from Colby. Of course he's going to be on a little different program (in spring training) because the surgery and the procedure he had nobody else has had it. We're going to have to listen to him and really get with the medical team. We're in unchartered waters right now but if anybody's going to find their way to shore it's Colby Lewis."
Lewis has a career record of 44-44 with a 4.76 ERA and 1.367 WHIP. In his last two and a half years before his injury, though, he was 32-29, 3.93 ERA, 1.175 WHIP, and 2.4 average WAR. If he makes the roster, Lewis will earn $2 million with a chance to make $4 million more in incentives.

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