Harrison pushed back as Rangers shuffle rotation
Lefty will go on Tuesday against Indians as Oswalt faces Rays in finale
ST. PETERSBURG -- Left-hander Matt Harrison, who is starting his second full season with the Rangers, had his start pushed back to Tuesday against the Indians.
Harrison was originally scheduled to pitch in Sunday's series finale against the Rays.
Right-hander Roy Oswalt will be making the start in Harrison's place in an attempt to give the 26-year-old more rest.
"We're just trying to give [Harrison] an extra couple of days," manager Ron Washington said. "He understands that last year we gave him a break and it helped him. He's the only one that's been on regular terms, so we're gonna do it right now and see where it takes us."
Harrison is coming off back-to-back losses to the Royals and Rays. He pitched a combined 10 innings and allowed 10 earned runs, along with two unearned, in the starts.
Oswalt, meanwhile, will be making his first start since Aug. 23, when he received a no-decision against the Twins. He most recently came out of the bullpen on Tuesday, allowing a run in 2 1/3 innings of work in a loss to the Royals.
The move, in turn, pushes the entire rotation back a day, giving even more rest to the other starters.
"Everyone benefits," Washington said. "It certainly wasn't something that was planned; we just decided to do it."
Pitching against Cleveland might turn out to be a blessing in disguise for Texas. The Indians feature a left-handed heavy lineup and conventional wisdom would suggest that Harrison, a southpaw, would fare better. It also sets him up to pitch against Seattle in the following series, a team he's done historically well against.
"That just happened to fall like that," Washington said.
Washington keeping tabs on well-rested 'pen
ST. PETERSBURG -- After pitching a combined 11 innings in a four-game set against Kansas City, manager Ron Washington believes his bullpen is rested enough for the remainder of September.
One man that might be feeling a little taxed is right-hander Mike Adams, who pitched in three of those previous games.
Washington credited the Royals for the way they "grinded" at-bats, but said his use of Adams and other arms he's used more often would be dictated by how the game is going.
"If we're winning by a decent margin, we might see other guys pitch instead of the guys that we've depended on," Washington said. "If it's close ballgames, [whoever] we have down there [warming] is coming in. We're not in a position to take chances right now. We're in a position to shut ballgames down."
Washington said he doesn't want to take away anything from any of the other relievers, though.
"That doesn't mean I don't trust those other guys down there," Washington said. "There's just some guys down there, when there's a situation when we have a chance to win, they're gonna be the ones to get the ball. It's that simple."
One of those guys includes closer Joe Nathan, who's recovered well since his 2010 Tommy John surgery. He's put together 30 saves -- including 28 in a row entering Friday -- with a 2.48 ERA in his first season with Texas.
How well Nathan's done isn't a surprise to Washington.
"He's really not doing anything I haven't seen before," Washington said. "It's just he's on another team. We learned along the way how to preserve him. We have to start preserving him because of surgery, age, all of that. It takes a while to get a feel for it."
Andrus, Beltre could be the DH against Rays
ST. PETERSBURG -- Rangers manager Ron Washington said before Friday's game with the Rays that he plans on using shortstop Elvis Andrus as a designated hitter at some point in the series.
Michael Young served as the DH in Friday's lineup.
Andrus had started nine of the last 10 games for the Rangers, going 12-for-38 at the plate. Andrus was originally on the bench on Thursday, but came in for defensive purposes in the bottom of the 10th in Texas' 5-4 win over the Royals.
"I haven't had a chance to get him a full day [off] yet," Washington said about Andrus. "When I give him a day, I end up putting him in the ballgame. He's been a workhorse."
Washington also hinted at penciling in third baseman Adrian Beltre as the DH in one of the next two games. However, because of Beltre's recent success, Washington might leave that choice in his hands.
"The way Beltre's playing right now, he might not want a DH day," Washington said.
He added that if Beltre wants to play the field, the DH spot could go back to Young or outfielder Nelson Cruz.
Washington didn't seem at all concerned about the artificial turf at Tropicana Field, saying it's not as bad for his outfielders' legs as the Rogers Centre in Toronto.
"It's not springy, so the impact doesn't rush through your body," Washington said. "They don't have those boards underneath it so you can feel it. It's not too bad."
Manager Ron Washington said that catcher Mike Napoli would likely be confined to the cardio rooms at Tropicana Field to do his rehab work, citing that the turf might be too tough on Napoli's strained left quadriceps. He'll continue to take batting practice on the field before games, though.
Lefty reliever Robbie Ross threw soft toss for the first time on Friday since his strained left forearm injury.
Top prospect Jurickson Profar had his parents and the scouts who signed him -- Chu Halibi and Jose Luis Felomina -- in attendance for Friday night's game.
Greg Zeck is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.