Colby Lewis pleased with first rehabilitation start

Posted Friday, May. 10, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Colby Lewis sounded upbeat the day after his first medical rehabilitation start for Triple A Round Rock.

Lewis threw 41 pitches over two innings, allowing three runs — all in the second inning — on four hits with two walks and one strikeout on Thursday night in Las Vegas. He threw an additional 11 pitches in the bullpen.

“I felt pretty good, teetered off a little bit in the second inning,” said Lewis, who is coming back from surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in his right elbow. “I think I just need to continue to go out there and build my pitch count up, but my stuff was good.”

Lewis is scheduled for a 55- to 60-pitch outing with Round Rock on Tuesday in Tucson, Ariz. He hopes he can last four innings.

“That’s what it’s about, getting up and down,” Lewis said. “That’s the challenge to get your body used to getting cold then getting hot like you would in the game.”

Lewis is trying to take it one game at a time, but said he could be in line for a five-inning start after that at Double A Frisco on May 19.

“Then we’ll see where the team wants me,” Lewis said.

Lewis topped out at 89 mph and sat in the 87 mph range. That is only a few ticks below his 90-91 mph average from last season.

“If he continues to spot the ball the way he’s capable of spotting it, the velocity will pick up,” manager Ron Washington said. “He’ll get outs the way he usually gets outs.”

Impressive defense

The mention of his errorless streak made Elvis Andrus a bit hesitant to talk about his defense this season. After all, he didn’t want to jinx it.

Unfortunately, a pregame conversation might have done just that. Andrus committed his first error of the season in the first inning Friday as he mishandled a grounder by Jose Altuve.

It snapped Andrus’ streak of 120 total chances without making an error, which was the most errorless chances by a shortstop in the American League going into Friday’s game.

“I feel really good right now on defense and am just ready to make all the plays,” Andrus said. “I’m becoming more consistent and have learned a good pregame routine. If I feel tired, I don’t take too many ground balls. If I feel good, I’ll take enough. But it’s more about quality than quantity.”

Just in time

Robinson Chirinos had a nightmarish travel day out of McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas on Friday. Two of his flights to Houston were canceled, and he wound up flying into DFW and landing at approximately 2 p.m.

Chirinos and a couple Rangers staff members then made the approximately 260-mile drive from DFW to Houston, arriving at 6:15 p.m. at Minute Maid Park.

Chirinos is back in the big leagues for the first time in two seasons after the Rangers placed catcher A.J. Pierzynski on the disabled list with a right oblique strain. But backup Geovany Soto is expected to get the majority of the starts.

“I’m ready to go 100 percent whenever they need me and just try to help the team win, that’s the bottom line,” Soto said.

Chirinos will get playing time, but Ron Washington said he won’t pair him with Yu Darvish and his vast array of pitches.

Briefly

• Ron Washington understood how Astros manager Bo Porter could make a mistake with the rules as he did Thursday against the Angels. Porter changed pitchers without the first reliever facing a batter, something the umpires allowed. “Sometimes you get caught up in the game and try to do some things,” Washington said. “There have been many times a manager tries to make a move and the umpire says no, and you go back to the dugout with your tail between your legs. It happens. He just got away with one.”

• Double A manager Steve Buechele served as the Rangers’ first-base coach Friday. Third-base coach Gary Pettis attended his daughter’s graduation, and first-base coach Dave Anderson moved to third. “Quick promotion and quick demotion,” Buechele said. “But it’s pretty neat to be up here.”

• Pitching coach Mike Maddux will miss Saturday’s game to attend his daughter’s graduation at TCU. Bullpen coach Andy Hawkins will take over Maddux’s duties, and minor-league pitching coordinator Danny Clark will be the bullpen coach.

Drew Davison, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @drewdavison

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