Will Texas Rangers closer Jose Leclerc be available for World Series Game 2?

After throwing a pair of scoreless innings against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday night, will Texas Rangers closer Jose Leclerc be ready for Game 2?

Texas Rangers pitcher Jose Leclerc
Texas Rangers pitcher Jose Leclerc / Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports

ARLINGTON, Texas — After pitching a pair of critical innings for the Texas Rangers on Friday night in a win over the Arizona Diamondbacks, there are plenty of questions about Jose Leclerc's availability for Game 2 of the World Series.

However, it seems that the 29-year-old right-hander will indeed be an option for Texas manager Bruce Bochy if needed on Saturday night.

Jose Leclerc likely available for Texas Rangers in World Series Game 2

Leclerc's two innings on Friday night were the most that he has pitched this postseason. However, he needed just 26 pitches to navigate the 10th and 11th innings and told reporters on Saturday that was a key factor in his ability to bounce back for Game 2.

"I think I can pitch again tonight if needed," Leclerc said through a translator. "I didn't throw that many pitches."

Leclerc also added that he won't be on any kind of a pitch count, saying, "I'm 100 percent good to go today, so whatever they ask me to do, I will do it."

This isn't the first time this season that Leclerc has pitched 2.0 or more innings as he reached that mark four times during the regular season, including a 2.2-inning outing on June 11 at Tampa Bay.

After Nathan Eovaldi left Game 1 after giving up six hits and five runs in 4.2 innings, Leclerc and four other Texas relievers combined to hold Arizona to just two hits and no runs over the next 6.1 frames. The Texas bullpen was one of the key stories from Game 1, and manager Bruce Bochy will have a fresh Aroldis Chapman to use against Arizona in Game 2 if he needs to deploy another high-leverage arm before Leclerc.

"He knows what time of year it is," Bochy said, referring to Chapman's extensive postseason experience. "He'll continue to go out there and help us out. You can't just have one or two guys. You need that third and fourth guy to help you in certain situations."

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