Apparently, the Rangers rotation may be just a bit closer to full strength by the time the weekend rolls around. According to T.R. Sullivan, Colby Lewis is expected to be called up to start Saturday against the Astros at home.
Lewis has an opt-out clause in his contract set to come into effect on Thursday, which means the Rangers are most likely trying to head that off by ensuring that he'll rejoin the rotation over the weekend. There's been no official announcement as of yet, but you can bet than given the option of leaving Lewis in the minors and risking him opting for free agency or calling him up and throwing him into the fire, the Rangers would much prefer the latter.
It would appear that Lewis is, at the very least, a superior option to Joe Saunders at this point. Saunders was placed on the DL after taking a ball off of his left ankle, and while Lewis may not be an overpowering pitcher, if he's able to at least be effective and pitch somewhat deep into games, he'll be an asset that the Rangers can appreciate.
Furthermore, it makes a ton of sense to have Lewis return on Saturday. He'll face the Astros at home, which could potentially give him a chance to work back into a groove after not pitching in a Major League game in almost two full seasons.
He'll also bring with him some goodwill that was earned with the fans due to being arguably the best postseason pitcher the Rangers have ever had. At the very least, Lewis should, if healthy and effective, be able to eat some innings and keep the Rangers in some games while potentially strengthening the bullpen later on when Matt Harrison returns and either Tanner Scheppers or Robbie Ross are able to rejoin the late-inning staff.