The Rangers have certainly found Derek Holland.
But are they in the process of losing Colby Lewis?
Look, I admit he’s a medical marvel. Coming off unprecedented hip resurfacing surgery for a pitcher, he’s got 14 wins and leads the Rangers with 175 innings pitched.
If he does nothing else this season, he’s a legit candidate for AL Comeback Player of the Year.
Problem for the Rangers? His last three starts are troubling signs that he might indeed do nothing else this season.
Lewis, 36, was horrible again Sunday as the Rangers dropped a 7-0 game that cost them a series in Anaheim. Lewis had no pop on his fastball and little movement on his curve. The result was another bad outing that gave his team little chance of winning. He allowed a homer to Mike Trout, hit Albert Pujols and allowed a run on a wild pitch.
And it continues a hideous trend.
On Aug. 21 Lewis beat Justin Verlander and shut out the Tigers, 2-0, to improve to 14-5. Since then he’s 0-3 and has seen his ERA balloon from 4.29 to 4.68.
How bad has it been? In Lewis’ last three starts the Rangers have been outscored a whopping 26-4 including losses to the Blue Jays (12-4), Padres (7-0) and Angels (7-0). In those games he’s pitched 15.2 innings, surrendering 23 hits and 18 runs.
Again, I'm not blaming Lewis. The Rangers wouldn't be in this position without him and he's a bulldog that has risen from the dead a couple times in his carer. His next victory will establish a career-high. And he’s already the first Rangers’ pitcher to go from 14+ losses to 14+ wins the next season since Jose Guzman in 1987.
But for the Rangers to push this surprising season across the finish line and into the postseason, Lewis’ tank can’t be empty.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.