In his first start of the spring, Texas Ranger righthander Colby Lewis had his velocity where he wanted it and felt good physically, but didn't have good results, getting pulled without getting through an inning. Afterwards, Lewis said that his surgically repaired hip felt so good that he had more range of motion than he has had in the past, which affected his release point, but that he felt good about his outing overall.
Today, in Lewis's second start, the results were there as well, as Colby threw 23 pitches (13 of them for strikes) in 2 shutout innings, allowed just two baserunners on an infield single and a walk while striking out one.
Reports on Twitter indicate that Lewis's velocity was in the 87-90 mph range, which is about where it was during Lewis's 2011-12 campaigns, and around where Lewis expects to pitch.
Its still spring training, and it is still early, but this is another encouraging step in Colby Lewis's comeback. After missing the second half of the 2012 season and all of 2013 after undergoing tendon flexor surgery in his right elbow, then having his hip worked on in August, 2013, Lewis is in camp on a minor league deal and fighting for a job on the Rangers' pitching staff. Mike Maddux had praise for Colby after the game:
#Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux: Colby [Lewis] looked great, man. His stuff is there, his ball flight is there, everything you want.— Drew Davison (@drewdavison) March 9, 2014
With Derek Holland out for the first half of the 2014 season and Matt Harrison expected to miss a start or two at the beginning of the year, the Rangers could really use a reliable starting pitcher or two. Lewis's progress so far suggests that he could be the solution the Rangers are looking for.