Harrison: 'I'll be ready for Opening Day'

ARLINGTON, Texas -- A lean and fit Matt Harrison arrived at a Christmas team function Tuesday night at Rangers Ballpark full of holiday spirit, saying that he's on track to open the season in the rotation.

"I'll be ready for Opening Day," Harrison said.

Harrison, the Rangers' 2013 Opening Day starter, is down to 245 pounds, ridding himself of the excess weight caused by the treatments he received after three surgeries over a five-month span. Harrison has been playing catch for a month, stretching out to 150 feet, and will begin throwing from a mound at about 50-percent effort next week.

Harrison received a big thumbs' up from manager Ron Washington, who was also at the Cowboys Santas Toy Drive Finale at Rangers Ballpark on Tuesday night.

"He's lost that fat from the operations," Washington said. "He looks tremendous."

Harrison made only two starts last season and had two surgeries in April and May to repair a herniated disc. He also had an operation in September to alleviate thoracic outlet syndrome, which he said he has mostly recovered from two months away from spring training.

Harrison has been working out at his home in North Carolina and will return to Arlington around Jan. 19 to ramp up his workouts.

"The workouts are great," said Harrison, who won a team-best 18 games in 2012. "The back feels good."