NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 14: Matt Harrison #54 of the Texas Rangers pitches agianst the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on August 14, 2012 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Along with Colby Lewis, Matt Harrison is a bit of an X-factor for the Texas Rangers and their questionable starting rotation heading into the 2014 season.
Harrison was slated as the Opening Day starter last season after his superb 2012 season and, of course, only made two awful starts before being shut down and eventually missing the entire season with multiple back surgeries.
Soon after pitchers and catchers reported to Surprise, Ariz., for spring training, Harrison was shut down after dealing with some neck and back stiffness and the setback meant he would not be ready for the Rangers' first series of the year against the Phillies.
Now, the hopeful No. 2 starter in Derek Holland's absense is on his way back and hoping to be back sooner rather than later, even if that first series of the season is out of the question.
"I feel good," Harrison told ESPN Dallas. "I just have to keep going. I feel like my arm is strong."
Harrison threw long toss on Saturday and reported no issues. He's scheduled to throw from a half-mound, the next step in the rehab process, on Monday in Surprise and then will go from there with hopes of getting a chance to pitch in some Cactus League games and stick with his goal of being ready by the second or third series of the year. But there is no official timetable for his return.