Lewis honored to have first-pitch duties

Colby Lewis honored to have first-pitch duties in the Rangers tiebreaker game against the Rays.

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The best postseason pitcher the Texas Rangers have will take the mound for Monday night's American League tiebreaker game.

Unfortunately for the Rangers, Colby Lewis won't be starting but will instead be throwing out the first pitch.

It will mark the first time Lewis has been on the mound at Rangers Ballpark since the 2012 season. Rangers CEO Nolan Ryan came up with the idea and Lewis was honored.

"It means a lot," Lewis said. "Being here for four years now and hopefully we can get something worked out and come back here for the fifth, to me it just kind of shows what kind of organization this is and where we want to be. I've always said this is where I want to be."

Lewis, 34, said he hoped to be able to throw from the mound. He also said he's going to test his leg and play catch before throwing the first pitch because he hasn't played catch in about seven weeks.

Lewis hasn't pitched in Arlington since June 23, 2012. He missed the second half of last season with a torn right flexor tendon. He tried to come back this year but ended up being shut down again and had hip resurfacing surgery last month.

In eight playoff starts for the Rangers, Lewis is 4-1 with a 2.34 ERA.

Texas manager Ron Washington said that if the Rangers made the playoffs, both Lewis and left-hander Matt Harrison would travel with the team.

Washington is happy to have Lewis' presence with his team.

"It means a lot because we weren't sure if Colby was going to be walking," Washington said. "He came around here with his cane and that lasted a day because those guys (in the clubhouse) got on him. He walked with a bat for a couple of days and then he threw that away. I think if anybody can show grit, fight and heart and desire and passion, that's Colby Lewis. He's been here with us cheering us on."

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