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Lewis Won't Begin Throwing for at Least 4 Weeks
Wednesday, June 22
According to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the 36-year-old will start his throwing program only after undergoing an MRI in roughly a month.
Lewis' injury came Tuesday night during his start against the Cincinnati Reds. He pitched five innings and allowed six earned runs in an 8-2 defeat for Texas:
Losing the veteran right-hander for an extended period of time is a major blow for the Rangers. According to FanGraphs, Lewis' 1.3 WAR is highest among Texas' qualified starting pitchers, and his 4.24 FIP is lowest in the rotation.
The Rangers own the highest playoff chances (90.9 percent) of any team in the American League West, per Baseball Prospectus. That figure is bound to drop in the coming weeks. USA Today's Bob Nightengale noted how depleted Texas' staff is quickly becoming:
A.J. Griffin looks close to stepping back on the mound for the first time since May 7. Wilson reported he's in line to start Friday against the Boston Red Sox. Having Griffin back will help alleviate Texas' injury problems, but manager Jeff Banister will still need to find replacements for both Lewis and Derek Holland.
Banister may have little choice but to call up Kyle Lohse. The 37-year-old had a 5.85 ERA in 37 appearances for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2015, and in seven minor league starts, he's 2-4 with a 5.09 ERA. Relying on Lohse to fill a major league rotation spot is a last resort, but Banister is running out of options.