ARLINGTON -- Rangers general manager Jon Daniels announced on Monday that the team has picked up Colby Lewis' $3.25 million option for the 2012 season.Lewis, 32, went 14-10 with a 4.40 ERA in 2011. "Colby's been a workhorse for us the last couple years, and you can't say enough about this guy's makeup," Daniels said. "There's no one I would want on the mound, certainly in October." Lewis has been a sterling performer in the postseason, holding a career 4-1 record with a 2.34 ERA in eight playoff starts. The 2011 campaign for Lewis was almost a mirror image of 2010, in which he went two-thirds of an inning longer while maintaining the same strikeout-to-walk ratio.
The right-hander was victimized by 14 more home runs allowed, though, and led the American League in home runs surrendered, which almost perfectly coincided with an increase of 15 earned runs from 2010 to 2011.The Rangers had a $250,000 buyout, but they picked up the option, meaning Lewis will most likely begin the '12 season in the starting rotation. Who will join Lewis in the rotation remains somewhat of a question mark.
The team has not decided whether closer Neftali Feliz will transition into a starting role, and incumbent ace C.J. Wilson enters free agency soon. Upcoming decisions on those two will go a long way towards determining the rest of the starters.
Louie Horvath is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.