SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Asked on a scale of 1 to 10 how concerned he is about his stiff shoulder, Neftali Feliz smiled.
"Uno," Feliz said Thursday.
The Texas Rangers right-hander came out after three innings in Tuesday's game against the Chicago Cubs after complaining that his shoulder was tight. He tested the shoulder on Wednesday and felt better.
He completed some long-toss throwing Thursday morning and felt fine. Feliz will long-toss again on Friday and throw a bullpen Saturday. The club will then decide whether he makes his scheduled start on Monday.
Feliz, who is transitioning from the closer's role to the rotation, had some shoulder issues in spring training last year and ended up on the disabled list in late April due to inflammation, but the 23-year-old is not worried that he's repeating that experience.
"This is different from last year," Feliz said through a translator. "I don't feel like it's a problem. I want to be careful and make sure this doesn't get any worse, but it's not like last year. It's different."
Feliz said his shoulder started bothering him when he was throwing to his final two batters on Tuesday. He was prepared to go back into the game, but pitching coach Mike Maddux was taking no chances and told Feliz that he was done for the day.
Feliz said he's confident that if it was the regular season and not spring training, he'd still be pitching. He was pleased with his three-inning start on Tuesday, in which he pitched out of a few jams and didn't allow a run while focusing on his off-speed pitches.
"I was feeling fine and throwing the ball where I wanted and doing what I wanted to do," Feliz said.
Meanwhile, the Rangers plan to continue stretching out starting pitchers Scott Feldman and Alexi Ogando. The schedule calls for Ogando to pitch against the Giants on Friday, with Derek Holland throwing in a minor league game.
Rangers manager Ron Washington said that has more to do with Holland than Feliz.
"We want to make sure we get Holland to the amount of pitches we want him to and we'll do it in the minor leagues and not care about the results," Washington said.