Left-hander Matt Harrison the Rangers’ opening-day starter will miss the
remainder of the season. For the Rangers that counted as good news given the alternative.

Harrison came out of an injury-rehabilitation start with Triple-A Round Rock on Friday because of a loss of feeling in the left hand. The Rangers feared an elbow injury that would require major surgery and cast doubt on Harrison’s status for next season.

Examinations by club medical director Dr. Keith Meister and spinal specialist Dr. Drew Dossett determined Harrison’s back was not ready to handle the strain of pitching. Harrison had compensated with a delivery adjustment that caused the hand condition.

The examinations found inflammation in the elbow but no structural damage. Harrison will not require what would be a third surgery this year to repair a ruptured disk in the back.

“As we’ve learned setbacks are a real possibility” general manager Jon Daniels said on Tuesday. “He had one. Fortunately it wasn’t worse. He didn’t hurt the elbow. … Matt’s going to be here a long time. We don’t want to push it.”