The Texas Rangers are starting a number of former relief pitchers as the 2014 MLB season gets underway, including Robbie Ross making his first ever career start tonight. According to ESPN on April 1, one of the Rangers regular starters Matt Harrison's injury will keep him out until at least the end of April.
Harrison missed most of the 2013 season after winning the team's Pitcher of the Year honors after 2012. He pitched in two games in 2013 before heading to the disabled list with an injured back that resulted in surgery to repair a herniated disk. He ended up undergoing two back surgeries.
He was expected to make it back this season, hoping to pick up where he left off in 2012 where he won 18 games with a 3.29 ERA.
That made the news that sleeping on a soft mattress caused him back pain and neck tightness in February very disturbing news. He started rehabbing his back but fell behind the other pitchers by two to three weeks. As a result, he opened the season on the DL along with fellow starters Yu Darvish and Derek Holland.
Harrison starts on Thursday for Double-A Frisco and it is time to see when he might return. General Manager Jon Daniels wants Harrison to be able to throw 100 pitches in a game before he returns and there is a chance that he will need at least a few more starts in Frisco and maybe Round Rock before returning to the Texas Rangers by the end of month or the start of May.