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Upon Further Review

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With the deadline for major league clubs to sign their 2010 draft picks drawing closer, Wayne Graham and his coaches have continued to evaluate the roster and prepare for any openings that might develop as well as keep a sharp eye trained for any late-blooming prospects to fill their needs.

The need for additional left-handed hitters was addressed with the decision of Ryan Lewis to return to Rice. 

Lewis, who is playing this summer for the Alexandria (La.) Aces of the Texas Collegiate League, had withdrawn from Rice and announced his intentions to transfer to LSU-Eunice, a Division II JC in his home state.  But Graham said after internal discussions with the staff, it was decided to offer Lewis a chance to return to the Owls. Lewis has completed the re-enrollent process and is set to return this fall.  

"We knew we have a shortage of left-handed hitters and I decided that rather than try to bring in someone from a JC who was an unknown quantity, it made more sense to bring Ryan back," Graham said. "We saw what he was capable of when he was healthy and we really liked his stroke. Ryan did a very good job for us as a freshman (in 2009) when he was thrown into the mix without benefit of Fall Baseball or anything. I don't think people really grasped how difficult it was to step in the way he did," Graham added.  

Lewis hit .289 in 22 games, including 11 starts) for the Owls in 2009 after he was pressed into duty in mid-April.  A scholarship quarterback, he only joined the Owls after the Texas Bowl. In the fall of 2009, Lewis appeared in five games for the Rice football team, including a start on national television against Tulsa.   He threw for 99 yards and a touchdown in the game, but also suffered a shoulder injury that lingered into the spring when he returned to the baseball team.   He appeared in one game as a defensive replacement and Rice has filed an application for a medical hardship waiver in order to give him three full seasons of remaining eligibility.

"He came to us after football this year with a shoulder injury and could not make up any ground.  He's healthy now and holding his own in the summer league while using a wood bat. I'd like to see where he'll be in the spring after going through a Fall with us.  With his shoulder healed, he could wind up starting in right field or we might look at him at first base," Graham added.

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2 Comments

What's the latest on Rendon? Has it been decided yet if his surgery will be in Vail or Houston?

Nothing new to report. Looks like any procedures will be done here in Houston

Good news about Ryan -- we can use him next year!

Chuck -- is there any update on the extent of Anthony's injury and the prognosis for his recovery?

No update at this time. He's scheduled for his procedure early next week. Until that happens, there's nothing to report regarding any of the items you mentioned.

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