Reality didn't seem to sink in for Matt Harrison until after Thursday's news conference at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.

The left-handed pitcher had known for days that he was on the verge of signing a five-year extension with the Rangers worth $55 million, plus a club-controlled option year that could be worth as much as $15.75 million.

Those are staggering numbers for a 27-year-old from Creedmoor, N.C. It's a town of 4,000 now, but when Harrison was a kid it had 200 people, one flashing light, a liquor store and a post office.

"Coming from pretty much hardly anything growing up, I know how hard it was for my parents," Harrison said.

Harrison paused and glanced across the room at his wife, Meghan, whom he met at South Granville High, outside of Creedmoor. Meghan on Wednesday held their 1-year-old daughter, Addie Grace, who wore a tot-sized Rangers No. 54 Harrison jersey.

"Now that I've signed this deal," Harrison continued, "I mean, it sets up my family and my daughter for life — and any other kids we have. It's very humbling to be able to do that. I won't take it lightly."

Nor do the Rangers, who have had a disappointing off-season but are glad to say they have three-fifths of this season's projected starting rotation on long-term contracts — Harrison, Yu Darvish and Derek Holland. A fourth projected starter, Alexi Ogando, is not yet eligible for arbitration.

Harrison was 18-11 last season, earning his first All-Star berth while leading Rangers starters in victories, ERA (3.29) and innings (213).

Many project Darvish to be the Rangers' ace and opening day starter.

"I hope Darvish is an ace next year," Harrison said. "That's a good thing. And I hope to be one, too. To me, which game we pitch doesn't matter."