Matt Harrison injury: Left hander will have MRI due to 'renewed back issues'

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Rangers rotation could be even more shorthanded if Harrison misses time.

Rangers lefty Matt Harrison is experiencing some lower back stiffness. He's preparing to head to Dallas for an MRI and an appointment with spine specialist Dr. Drew Dossett, according to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.

Harrison had been dealing with a stiff neck prior to the "renewed" back issues, so the team is being exceedingly cautious.

Texas is already without Derek Holland until around midseason, so the loss of Harrison would be a considerable blow to their rotation. Holland suffered a knee injury that required surgery this offseason after an accident in his home.

The Rangers are set to feature Yu Darvish, Alexi Ogando, and Martin Perez in their rotation, but the fourth and fifth spots are currently unspoken for, assuming Harrison isn't ready to start the season.

Texas is in the process of stretching out Tanner Scheppers and Robbie Ross this spring in an effort to widen their options. They also have recently signed free agent Tommy Hanson as well as Nick Tepesch and Colby Lewis as internal options for the back end.

Harrison, 28, signed a six-year, $57.95 million extension with the Rangers in 2012 after posting a 3.34 ERA in just under 400 innings in 2011 and 2012. Last year, Harrison managed only two starts due to a herniated disc that required surgery and an extended stay on the disabled list.

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