This weekend at Rangers Fan Fest, Ron Washington dropped a bombshell when he said, in January, that Colby Lewis will be his Opening Day starter on April 6 when the Chicago White Sox open the 2012 season at Rangers Ballpark.
And that shouldn't be a surprise to anyone.
Even if the Rangers sign Japanese import Yu Darvish, which is totally expected to happen, Lewis has earned his moment in the sun as an Opening Day starter after C.J. Wilson deservedly got the bid last seaosn and Scott Feldman got it in 2010.
Lewis has been the Rangers best postseason pitcher in club history, and it's not really that close judging by numbers alone.
In 50 postseason innings, he's 4-1 with a 2.34 ERA including arguably the greatest postseason pitching performance in club history in Game 6 of the 2010 ALCS when the Rangers eliminated the Yankees. The only guy that can post a valid argument there is Derek Holland for his Game 4 start in the 2011 World Series.
He was 14-10 in the 2011 regular season with a slightly inflated ERA of 4.40 and he led the league by giving up 35 home runs. But two seasons ago, Lewis posted a 3.72 regular-season ERA so improvements can be made from last season.
Simple fact is, Lewis deserves the honor more than anyone. Derek Holland is without a doubt more talented, but he's got half a season of stellar pitching under his belt. Darvish has zero games of stellar pitching in Major League Baseball under his belt.