Rangers pitcher Matt Harrison threw 25 pitches from 60 feet from flat ground today and said his injured left bicep is feeling better.
The plan is for Harrison to play catch from 90 feet Thursday, then to attempt long toss in Toronto this weekend. After which, he would need a couple bullpen sessions before going to a rehab assignment.
Harrison took a risk pushing his injured biceps to maintain his spot in a competitive Rangers rotation. He first noticed the soreness in late April, but thought he could pitch through it. In the end, he couldn't and is expected to be placed on the 15-day disabled list to make room for Derek Holland on the roster.
Now he faces potentially losing his starting job to Holland, who was called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City to fill Harrison’s job.
"I just wanted to be out there and competitive," Harrison said. "It got to the point where it was hurting me and the team.
“It’s a bad situation, because [of our depth,] but the only thing I can do is get back to 100 percent and come back strong and go there and pitch well where I’m at. There’s nothing I can do about it unfortunately. This injury happened and I just need to come back strong.”
Harrison started six games this season with two decisions (1-1) and a 5.29 ERA. He was frustrated with himself for not letting the club know the extent of his injuries.
“I probably didn’t do enough treatment myself to prevent it from getting as bad as it was.” Harrison said. “Unfortunately I pitched way to long and should have said something about it earlier.”
The coaching staff has mentioned moving Harrison to relief pitching when he returns, and Harrison said while he has always been a starter, he was open to the idea.
“Whatever I have to do, whether it means going to the bullpen to help this team, I’ll do that," he said.
Harrison said he feels better after throwing Wednesday.
“I feel like a new arm,” Harrison said. “I didn’t feel any pain or any soreness today, so I guess we’re headed in the right direction… The way I felt today, I don’t see myself having any more problems with it.”
* According to Rangers manager Ron Washington, right fielder Nelson Cruz was in his car headed back to Arlington on Wednesday afternoon after a stint on the 15-day DL for a strained right hamstring.
Cruz completed a two-game rehab assignment in Oklahoma City on Wednesday, in which he went 3-9 with three RBIs. He is expected to workout at the team facility Thursday before returning to the lineup Friday at Toronto.
Washington said he expects Cruz to bat sixth in the lineup, behind second baseman Ian Kinsler.