Texas Rangers right-hander Matt Harrison will likely begin the season on the disabled list. However, the left-hander said this season will not be a lost one like 2013.
Harrison left the Rangers' spring training camp in Surprise, Ariz., on Monday to fly to Dallas where he was to be examined by back specialist Dr. Drew Dossett. Harrison underwent two back surgeries last year to repair a herniated disc and dealt with lower back stiffness in the early days of spring training.
"I feel good," Harrison said. "I feel I'm 100 percent. I wanted to cancel the appointment but (the Rangers) wouldn't let me."
The Rangers want to take no chances after Harrison was limited to two early-season starts last season in the first year of a six-year, $57.95 million contract. The 28-year-old was 14-9 with a 3.39 ERA in 2011 and 18-11 with a 3.29 ERA in 2012.
"At this stage, based on the initial symptoms, we want to make sure we're all clear before we ramp him up again," Rangers assistant general manager Thad Levine said.
Harrison has not thrown since Feb. 17, which puts him behind the rest of the pitchers. Most likely, he will have a short stint on the DL while he builds up arm strength.
Harrison believes his back stiffened because he was sleeping in a soft bed at his rented condominium near the Rangers' training facility.
"A lot of time you come to spring training and get stiff or a little sore the first few days," Harrison said. "For sure the bed was the issue. I've switched beds and there are no issues now."
--C Geovany Soto underwent surgery Saturday to remove the trigonum bone in his left foot but is expected to be ready for Opening Day. Doctors removed the bone because it was putting pressure on the flexor tendon. Soto is expected to miss three weeks. He will be the Rangers' primary catcher this season following the offseason departure of C A.J. Pierzynski to the Boston Red Sox in free agency.
--2B Jurickson Profar still has not been cleared to throw after reporting to spring training with a case of right shoulder tendinitis. However, Profar did begin swinging a bat Friday and is optimistic about being ready for the opener.
--OF Alex Rios returned to workouts Monday after sitting out two days because of toe soreness. Rios has had toe problems since his days playing for the Toronto Blue Jays from 2004-09 on the Rogers Centre artificial surface. Rios has been durability despite the discomfort, averaging 151 games a year in the four full seasons since being claimed by the Chicago White Sox off waivers from the Blue Jays.
--3B Kevin Kouzmanoff was scratched from an intrasquad game Monday because of a sore back. Kouzmanoff, in spring training as a non-roster player, hit 23 home runs for the San Diego Padres in 2008 but has not played in the major leagues since 2011 when he batted a combined .235 with seven homers in 73 games with the Oakland Athletics and Colorado Rockies.
--RHP Scott Richmond was re-signed to a minor-league contract but not invited to major-league spring training. In 20 starts with Class AAA Round Rock last season, Richmond went 6-7 with a 5.91 ERA. The 34-year-old pitched in 36 games, making 29 starts, over four seasons with the Blue Jays from 2008-12, going 9-14 with a 5.27 ERA.