ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 19: Colby Lewis #48 of the Texas Rangers pitches against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning on April 19, 2014 at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
GIve Colby Lewis credit, he's come back to pitch for the Texas Rangers after a 21-month hiatus from the major leagues and he's done a decent enough job, sporting a 1-1 record with a 4.60 ERA, but if Lewis wants to stick around in the Rangers' rotation all year, he needs to improve.
The biggest area of improvement needed from Lewis is the ability to work deeper into games than he has been. In his three starts, he's only retired two hitters past the fifth inning. Lewis has never been a guy that's going to give you seven or eight innings every time out — he relies too much on the strikeout and works counts full too often to do that — but he needs to at least get into the sixth inning consistently.
Lewis is one of the biggest feel-good stories on the Rangers this year and impossible not to root for, but the way the Rangers' rotation is laid out right now and with Derek Holland still set to return in the coming months, there's going to be an odd man out. Also, Joe Saunders could be back from the DL soon. Most likely, it will be Robbie Ross, especially if he continues to struggle like he has in his past two outings, but if Ross can pick it back up, it could be Lewis.
Lewis has a chance to make another start on Friday to start a three-game series in Anaheim, and the Rangers would like to see a little more efficiency from him.