Friday, October 8, 2010

Pitcher Colby Lewis is the Rangers Cool Hand Luke

Pitcher Colby Lewis (12-13, 3.71 ERA) has the chance to help the Rangers get another huge monkey off their collective backs.  He will make his first career postseason for Texas in Game 3 of the ALDS against the Rays on Saturday. The Rangers are looking for their first ever win in a postseason series but Lewis claims he's not phased.

"Taking my family to Japan, that's nervous," Lewis said referring to the last two seasons he spent pitching for the Hiroshima Carp in Japan.

Lewis is not a roller coaster guy. He seems to enjoy life a little more on the merry-go-round, meaning he is not a person who gets too high or too low during the course of what can be an emotionally challenging season.

"Colby is a rock," said pitching coach Mike Maddux. "He's been the same guy win, lose or draw. He has a lot of confidence in himself, in his abilities. He's Cool Hand Luke for me."

Maddux cites the roller coaster Lewis' career has ridden that has given the 31-year old his strength of character.  Lewis won 10 games for Texas in 2003 before missing the majority of the next two seasons with shoulder problems. Add to that, the complete lifestyle change with the move to Japan with his wife and newborn son and it's clear this is a man who has been tested both on and off the field.

"Colby's been to the bottom," Maddux said. "He knows what the bottom smells like and it's not real good. Sometimes guys really excel when they've been to the bottom and that's Colby.  Multiple surgeries later he's fought his way back and, too his credit, he's earned the right to pitch tomorrow."
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