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Lewis retires, will move to Rangers' front office

Banister, Andrus among other attendees at Awards Dinner
MLB.com @Sullivan_Ranger

ARLINGTON -- Former pitcher Colby Lewis finally made it official at the Rangers' Awards Dinner on Friday night.

"I'm retired now," Lewis said, in receiving the Mark Holtz Alumni Award.

ARLINGTON -- Former pitcher Colby Lewis finally made it official at the Rangers' Awards Dinner on Friday night.

"I'm retired now," Lewis said, in receiving the Mark Holtz Alumni Award.

Lewis did not pitch in 2017, but he had never announced his retirement until now. Going forward, he will work for the Rangers as a special assistant to the general manager.

Other news and quotes from FanFest weekend:

• Rangers manager Jeff Banister was asked in his Q&A with the fans about the wisdom of giving reliever Matt Bush a chance to start. Texas has had mixed success with moving relievers into the rotation in the past. Both Neftali Feliz and Tanner Scheppers sustained significant injuries after making the switch.

"Your experience is what happened here," Banister said. "There are 29 other teams that have done this with premium success. We feel Matt has all the qualities to be a Major League starter."

Elvis Andrus on the Astros: "We are not intimidated. If we play good baseball, we can beat them We always play good baseball against them. That's not going to change."

Tweet from @Rangers: One legend & a future one. The 2017 Rangers Player of the Year Award - @ElvisandrusSS1. #RangersAwards pic.twitter.com/nNKjkNSBw2

• Pitcher Cole Hamels missed both the dinner on Friday and FanFest on Saturday because of a case of the flu.

Doug Fister on a potential pitch clock and MLB's desire to improve the pace of game: "There are some things we have to kind of take care of on the field. For me, honestly, I try to work as quick as I can. That's part of my strategic game, but also helps with my timing and stay locked in."

• General manager Jon Daniels and his staff are headed for the Dominican Republic for their annual winter visit on Sunday. The Rangers have approximately $3.5 million in international bonus slot money available, among the highest of any club. A name to watch is Julio Pablo Martinez, 21, a Cuban outfielder who is highly regarded but has yet to be cleared to sign with a Major League team.

• The Rangers have another giveaway planned in June to honor third baseman Adrian Beltre. One night they will give away drink coasters shaped like an on-deck circle. Beltre was ejected from a game last season for moving the on-deck circle closer to home plate when he was told to get back toward the dugout.

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Texas Rangers, Colby Lewis