When Derek Holland injured his knee and required microfracture surgery, it meant the club's projected No. 2 starter would be out until at least the all-star break in July. But even before Holland's injury, there were several questions revolving around the Texas Rangers' starting rotation — pretty much everyone with the exception of Cy Young candidate Yu Darvish.
While Holland's injury accelerated the Rangers' need for more starting pitching depth, it's been a need all offseason, and so far, the Rangers haven't done anything to address it.
Now, it seems the Rangers are down to two possible options for external additions — free agent Tommy Hanson and international signee Suk-Min Yoon, a South Korean pitcher. Other than those two, they also have several internal options for the rotation with guys like Nick Tepesch and most intriguingly, Colby Lewis. There are also guys that could move from the bullpen, and are being stretched out to do so entering spring training next week, in Robbie Ross and Tanner Scheppers.
"You can never have enough pitching," Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux told MLB.com.
Lewis, who hasn't pitched in the bigs since 2012, and was brought in on a one-year minor-league deal with a big-league camp invite, could re-emerge as a strong candidate. And so far, so good, as Lewis, the most accomplished postseason pitcher in Rangers history, is apparently feeling pretty good.
"He's feeling good," Maddux said. "I've seen video of him throwing, and he looks free and easy. He's able to get off his back side, that's something he hasn't been able to do [because of the hip] in a while. Now he can push off the mound. Before, he was falling downhill."