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June 30, 2013

Rangers notes: Updates on Lance Berkman, Colby Lewis, Tanner Scheppers

Lance Berkman has had four operations on his right knee, and said it doesn't tolerate much. That's why he is still out of the lineup and hasn't been available for the Texas Rangers since slipping down the team's airplane stairs late Thursday night.

Berkman admitted it's a strange injury, up there with his injury following the 2004 season when he tore his ACL playing flag football.

But Berkman doesn't believe it'll require a disabled list stint, although he hasn't swung a bat since the stair incident.

Here are a few other notes:

* Colby Lewis is feeling good about his progress after his last two bullpen sessions. He has thrown about 40-pitch sessions the last two times, including on Sunday. Lewis hopes to begin throwing live batting practice soon, and return by late July for the second-half push.

* Tanner Scheppers had a day off Saturday, as he's had a heavy workload so far this season. Scheppers said he feels fine physically and will be available today. Manager Ron Washington praised Scheppers for being honest with the coaching staff as to when he felt he could use an extra day, even though they wound up on games that went into extra innings.

Said Washington:  "It not only helps him, it helps us, too. I certainly don't want him to battle through something and it ends up costing us time with him. I'd rather just give him the time down if that what he says he needs, and I don't want him to fee embarrassed about it. You don't know how tough it is in this business to get honesty out of one of baseball players. It's refreshing when one of your guys is honest with you. You want honesty. You preach that to them all the time because something little can turn into something huge. If it turns into something huge, then you just hurt your whole team and not only yourself."

* Alexi Ogando, on the DL with right shoulder inflammation, threw a 55-60 pitch bullpen session Sunday morning, and said he felt good afterwards. He will progress to live batting practice on Tuesday or Wednesday, and could be in line for a rehab assignment after that.

-- Drew Davison

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