By Matt Snyder
Matt Harrison's days in the Rangers' starting rotation may be numbered.
Tommy Hunter, who went down late in the spring with a groin injury, is getting the ball for Double-A Frisco Wednesday. The target the Rangers have in mind is reportedly 45-50 pitches and he'll be ready to rejoin the major-league club once he gets up into the 90-pitch range -- which should be about three starts, barring setbacks. (SportsDayDFW )
A few weeks ago, the thought was that Alexi Ogando would be moved back to the bullpen once Hunter was ready to return, but lanky right-hander is dealing and it would be foolish to throw that away. He's 3-0 with a 2.30 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 21 strikeouts in 31 1/3 innings. Meanwhile, Harrison has flat-lined. As I noted in 3 up, 3 down Sunday evening, Harrison has given up 14 hits and 11 earned runs in his past 4 2/3 innings. That's over the course of two starts, not just one. Things don't appear to get any easier next time around, as Harrison will face the slugging Yankees Friday. If he doesn't get things figured out very soon, he'll be the odd man out in the deep Rangers' rotation.
Hunter, 24, was 13-4 with a 3.73 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in 128 innings last season. He initially won a starting job out of spring training but then injured his groin the same day.
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