Colby Lewis must do this tonight


Texas Rangers pitcher Colby Lewis might not be the same pitcher he was back in 2010, 2011 and 2012, but he is still a very good pitcher.  There are not many other players that work harder than him or have more determination in the majors right now.  After 11 games he still doesn’t have a quality start.  In case you don’t know a quality start is when a pitcher reaches 6 innings and allows 3 or fewer earned runs in a game.

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During his last outing Colby Lewis was pitching very well and only allowed 3 runs over 5.0 innings, but his pitch count was getting a bit too high for him to continue.

Even after being nailed with a liner by Justin Bour during the Miami Marlins game he remained in the game and recorded the final out.  It’s just another great example of his mental toughness and determination.

Over his last 4 starts Lewis hasn’t made it 6 complete innings.  The Rangers could really use 6 full innings out of him to allow the bullpen to get some rest.  If they don’t they’ll likely use Scott Baker who hasn’t been used since he was shelled for 7 earned runs last Monday against the Cleveland Indians.  If they do have use Baker, he should be effective.  Baker is still a great pitcher who I have confidence in.  The main problem is the Rangers will still have 5 games left on this rough west coast road trip.

The A’s are again playing some very good ball.  They are currently hitting .249 overall (.259 at home).   This season Lewis has an opposing batting average of .336, which isn’t very good overall and for him.  Before the injury he was a lot better.  But, to give Lewis credit he’s able to bare down when it matters.   When Lewis has runners that average drops to .291 and even lower when they are in scoring position at .286.

Today against the A’s he’ll need to keep that bare down mentality all day.  The A’s will be looking to hit the ball and run up his count.  He’ll have to out think the A’s hitters and get some quick and timely outs.  If there is anyone that is able to out think the opposing batter it is Colby Lewis.  Many have said Lewis is done, right now I don’t think so and there is no way Lewis thinks so.

What must he do tonight against the Oakland Athletics?  He’ll need to keep his same frame of mind he uses when he has runners on to help keep the A’s off base.  Also, he’ll need to do his best to keep his pitch count down.  He’ll especially need to do his best to reach the 6th inning, keep the A’s at 3 or less runs to earn a quality start and to save the bullpen.  If he’s able to do that he’ll put another notch in his belt this season and set up the Rangers for a possible win against the A’s.