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Friday, March 23, 2012
Notes: Matt Harrison won't start vs. Angels

By Richard Durrett

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Texas Rangers starter Matt Harrison will stay on his normal schedule and pitch Saturday. But it won't be against the Los Angeles Angels in Surprise Stadium.

Harrison is slated to pitch in a minor league game, in which he'll throw 80 pitches in five or six innings. The 26-year-old lefty told the club that he didn't mind facing the Angels.

"It's not like they haven't seen me," Harrison said. "But the coaches told me it wasn't about that. They'd prefer, since we're stretching out to five innings, that we do it in a minor league game where we can throw exactly the amount they want and not worry about having to change pitchers in the middle of an inning or anything like that. I'll just get my work in."

Yu Darvish, whose normal day is Sunday, won't pitch against the Angels in Tempe that day, either. He will throw to Rangers minor leaguers in Surprise Stadium. The Rangers don't see any reason to allow some of the Angel regulars to see Darvish before the regular season. Plus, they can monitor the Japanese pitcher's progress in a more controlled environment.

It appears unlikely that C.J. Wilson will pitch against his former team Sunday, either. The Rangers and Angels continue to play a little hide-and-seek, setting up for another competitive series of games in 2012. The first time the two teams meet in the regular season is May 11-13 in Arlington.

Other notes:

* Neftali Feliz threw a long-toss session Friday and said he felt good. Feliz said his shoulder felt a little tight Thursday when he had a long-toss session, and that was probably why the club decided to hold off on a bullpen session and let him long-toss again Friday. He is scheduled to throw a bullpen Saturday.

Assistant GM Thad Levine admitted that Feliz's Monday start "is in question" and it seems likely the club will back off him for a few days. He can continue to throw bullpens to keep his arm strength up and give him a chance to make sure everything is OK before he proceeds. But as of now, the club hasn't made any announcements about his schedule.