Holland had microfracture surgery

Derek Holland's knee surgery last week involved a microfracture procedure to repair the cartilage behind his left kneecap.

The fact that it was a microfracture procedure is one reason the club has put a midseason timeline on Holland's return, rather than sooner. The procedure is designed to stimulate blood flow and help it heal.

Holland said Saturday he hurt his knee when his dog, Wrigley, ran up the stairs and tripped him. The left-hander's knee slammed the stair, causing the injury.

But not all microfracture surgeries are the same. For instance, Scott Feldman had microfracture surgery on his knee right after the 2010 season ended and didn't return to the majors for eight months, though he did have a host of rehab starts prior to his big league return after the All-Star break in 2011.

Feldman's lengthy recovery time, though, was in part because he had cartilage repair done around the femur, a weight-bearing bone. Holland's procedure was in the kneecap, so it might not require quite as long a rehab time. That will depend on how well Holland heals and how his rehab goes.

The 27-year-old Holland said this weekend that he believes he could return sooner than projected, but knows the club won't rush things.

Holland was 10-9 with a 3.42 ERA in 33 starts (213 innings), solidifying himself as the Rangers' No. 2 starter behind Yu Darvish heading into the 2014 season.