Starting pitcher Colby Lewis #48 of the Texas Rangers pitches against the Cincinnati Reds during the spring training game at Surprise Stadium on March 11, 2011.
Colby Lewis's start to the season isn't going really well so far.
The Rangers No. 2 pitcher gave up four runs in five innings to the Angels in an embarrassing 15-4 loss.
That outing ratcheted his ERA up to 5.82 in his three starts this year, and he's lost the last two. Even his win in his first start was a high-scoring affair against the Red Sox in which he wasn't that great.
And it came after a nearly two-week layoff after he was the first player in MLB history to take advantage of the league's new "paternity leave" policy so he could go be with his wife last week in California when she gave birth to their child.
Evan Grant of The Dallas Morning News went as far as to wonder if Lewis is suffering from "dead arm" given his reduced velocity numbers and erratic control.
If that's the case, that's bad news for the Rangers.
Lewis was an inning-eating beast last year as he pitched over 200 innings with a great ERA for pitching in Texas (3.72) and no run support, which led to his 12-13 record.
But he was easily the best Rangers starter in the postseason, getting big wins against the Yankees and the only win in the World Series against the Giants.
If Lewis is placed on the DL for any extended amount of time, or has simply lost his stuff, that could doom the Rangers' rotation. True, Matt Harrison, Derek Holland and Alexi Ogando have been great so far, but they're still unproven. To lose a top-of-the-rotation guy would cripple any rotation, and the Rangers' is no different.
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