Nick Tepesch continued impressing on Tuesday night as he auditions for a spot in the back end of the Texas Rangers' 2015 starting rotation.
Tepesch had one of the best outings of his career in taking a no-decision as the Rangers ended up beating Tampa Bay in 14 innings on a walk-off walk.
The 25-year-old continued an impressive run that has dropped his season ERA by nearly 60 points over his past three starts, but Tuesday's was arguably his finest. He worked seven innings and threw 102 pitches, allowing just two runs on four hits and he took a no-hitter into the fifth inning.
“I felt like I had good stuff all night,” Tepesch told reporters after the game. “Commanding my fastball the last two outings really was [key] for me. Commanding my fastball [and] everything else plays off that.”
A look at the possible setup for a 2015 rotation would almost certainly include Tepesch at this point. After failing to crack the big-league roster after a disappointing spring training, Tepesch went to Round Rock and excelled before a call-up. After some initial struggle, he's seemingly settled in.
The Rangers will certainly go after a top-end pitcher in free agency, possibly two, but right now all that is assured for the 2015 Rangers rotation is Yu Darvish and Derek Holland with Martin Perez coming back around the all-star break, in a best-case scenario. Tepesch appears to be the favorite to fill out the back end of the rotation.