Nick Tepesch ready for 2014 debut, hopes to stick around

Posted Tuesday, May. 13, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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Nick Tepesch won the fifth spot in the rotation going into 2013 and had a chance to do the same this spring. What happened?

“I had a pretty awful spring,” Tepesch said bluntly. “You can’t expect to make the team pitching that bad.”

Tepesch found himself moving the minor-league clubhouse sooner than expected as he compiled an 11.25 ERA over his first three spring starts.

He’s regrouped, though, and has been the best starter at Triple A Round Rock. That’s why the Rangers will recall Tepesch prior to Wednesday’s game against the Astros.

It remains to be seen if this is simply a spot start for Tepesch with Martin Perez dealing with left elbow inflammation, or perhaps a chance for him to prove himself worthy of staying in the big leagues.

Tepesch, 25, has gone 6-1 with a 1.58 ERA over seven starts with Round Rock this season. As a rookie with the Rangers last year, Tepesch was 4-6 with a 4.84 ERA over 19 games, including 17 starts.

“He’s developed more of a personality on the mound this season,” Round Rock pitching coach Brad Holman said. “He’s pitching with a little more attitude and heart rather than over-thinking and trying to manipulate his way through a game.”

Pitching-wise, Tepesch continues to rely mostly on his sinking fastball to induce groundouts and has been throwing his cutter well. He also has a curveball and is still developing a changeup.

The changeup remains the critical pitch for Tepesch to gain and implement in his game plan. It’s a necessary change-of-speed pitch to keep hitters off-balance, and Tepesch has altered his grip and is getting more and more comfortable with it.

In his 2014 debut, though, Tepesch is simply focused on getting outs rather than throwing his changeup.

“It’s just a matter of commanding my pitches and being able to throw my four pitches for strikes,” Tepesch said.

Scheppers throws

Tanner Scheppers threw off a mound Tuesday for the first time since landing on the disabled list with right elbow inflammation on April 18.

Scheppers felt his 25-30 pitch bullpen session went well, saying he even “let some go.”

“Definitely encouraging to get back on the mound and see the light at the end of the tunnel,” Scheppers said.

Scheppers doesn’t know when he’ll throw again or in what capacity he will be in. He said the team has yet to discuss whether he should be ready to go back in the rotation or the bullpen.

Scheppers, this year’s Opening Day starter who had a 9.82 ERA in four starts, feels he can start and the injury had nothing to do with him making the transition to the rotation, but also knows the quickest route back is in a relief role.

“I’m still waiting for some of those conversations to take place,” Scheppers said. “I’m just excited to be on the mound and headed in the right direction.”

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

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Boston102TV: CSN-CHI, CSN-NE
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Dallas10Gridiron Replay
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San Francisco3Gridiron Replay
Sunday
San Diego 1:00 PM ET
Baltimore TV: CBS
Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: CBS
Tennessee 1:00 PM ET
Houston TV: CBS
Washington 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: FOX
NY Giants 1:00 PM ET
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Minnesota TV: FOX
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Pittsburgh TV: FOX
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St. Louis TV: CBS
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Arizona 4:05 PM ET
Atlanta TV: FOX
New England 4:25 PM ET
Green Bay TV: CBS
Denver 8:30 PM ET
Kansas City TV: NBC
Monday
Miami 8:30 PM ET
NY Jets TV: ESPN
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Friday, November 28Full Scoreboard
NY Rangers33rd Prd 11:26 | Box
Philadelphia0TV: NBC, SN
Chicago 11/28 4:00 PM ET
Anaheim TV: NHLN, SN, WGN, FSN-PT
NY Islanders 11/28 5:00 PM ET
Washington TV: MSG, CSN-DC
Winnipeg 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Boston TV: TVA Sports 2, TSN3, NESN
Montreal 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: RDS, MSG-BUF
Detroit 11/28 7:00 PM ET
New Jersey TV: FSN-DET, MSG+
Carolina 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: NHLN, FSN-CAR, ROOT-PIT
Vancouver 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Columbus TV: SN-PAC, FSN-OH
Ottawa 11/28 7:30 PM ET
Florida TV: RDS2, TSN5, FSN-FL
Edmonton 11/28 8:00 PM ET
St. Louis TV: SN-W, FSN-MW
Minnesota 11/28 8:30 PM ET
Dallas TV: FSN-N+, FSN-SW+
Full Scoreboard
Friday, November 28Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Friday, November 28Full Scoreboard
Chicago1044th Qtr 0:50 | Box
Boston102TV: CSN-CHI, CSN-NE
Golden State 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Charlotte TV: CSN-BA, SPSO
New Orleans 11/28 7:30 PM ET
Atlanta TV: FSN-NO, SPSO
Milwaukee 11/28 7:30 PM ET
Detroit TV: FSN-WI, FSN-DET
Dallas 11/28 7:30 PM ET
Toronto TV: FSN-SW, TSN2
LA Clippers 11/28 8:00 PM ET
Houston TV: NBA TV, FSN-PT, ROOT-SW
Orlando 11/28 8:00 PM ET
Indiana TV: FSN-FL, FSN-IN
New York 11/28 8:00 PM ET
Oklahoma City TV: MSG, FSN-OK
Sacramento 11/28 8:30 PM ET
San Antonio TV: CSN-CA, FSN-SW
Phoenix 11/28 9:00 PM ET
Denver TV: FSN-AZ, Altitude
Memphis 11/28 10:00 PM ET
Portland TV: SPSO, CSN-NW
Minnesota 11/28 10:30 PM ET
LA Lakers TV: FSN-N, TWC SN
Full Scoreboard
Week 13Full Scoreboard
Thursday
Chicago17Final | Box
Detroit «34Gridiron Replay
Philadelphia «33Final | Box
Dallas10Gridiron Replay
Seattle «19Final | Box
San Francisco3Gridiron Replay
Sunday
San Diego 1:00 PM ET
Baltimore TV: CBS
Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: CBS
Tennessee 1:00 PM ET
Houston TV: CBS
Washington 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: FOX
NY Giants 1:00 PM ET
Jacksonville TV: FOX
Carolina 1:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: FOX
New Orleans 1:00 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: FOX
Oakland 1:00 PM ET
St. Louis TV: CBS
Cincinnati 1:00 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: CBS
Arizona 4:05 PM ET
Atlanta TV: FOX
New England 4:25 PM ET
Green Bay TV: CBS
Denver 8:30 PM ET
Kansas City TV: NBC
Monday
Miami 8:30 PM ET
NY Jets TV: ESPN
Full Scoreboard
Friday, November 28Full Scoreboard
NY Rangers33rd Prd 11:26 | Box
Philadelphia0TV: NBC, SN
Chicago 11/28 4:00 PM ET
Anaheim TV: NHLN, SN, WGN, FSN-PT
NY Islanders 11/28 5:00 PM ET
Washington TV: MSG, CSN-DC
Winnipeg 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Boston TV: TVA Sports 2, TSN3, NESN
Montreal 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: RDS, MSG-BUF
Detroit 11/28 7:00 PM ET
New Jersey TV: FSN-DET, MSG+
Carolina 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: NHLN, FSN-CAR, ROOT-PIT
Vancouver 11/28 7:00 PM ET
Columbus TV: SN-PAC, FSN-OH
Ottawa 11/28 7:30 PM ET
Florida TV: RDS2, TSN5, FSN-FL
Edmonton 11/28 8:00 PM ET
St. Louis TV: SN-W, FSN-MW
Minnesota 11/28 8:30 PM ET
Dallas TV: FSN-N+, FSN-SW+
Full Scoreboard