Matt Harrison activated for Sunday debut

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As expected, the Rangers have activated left-hander Matt Harrison from the disabled list for Sunday’s series finale in Seattle against the host Mariners. Harrison will be making his first start since April 2013 as Texas tries to grab two of three at Safeco Field.

The 28-year-old wound up missing a full 12 months due to back and right shoulder injuries, but he was an All-Star and drew American League Cy Young Award votes in 2012 when he posted a 3.29 ERA (133 ERA+) in 213 1/3 innings. So the hope is he’ll be a big addition now that his health has returned.

The Rangers should also get lefty starter Derek Holland (microfracture knee surgery) back in a month or so. He threw live batting practice Saturday for the first time since his January microfracture knee surgery and was able to perform some fielding drills. Texas enters play Sunday with a 15-9 record.

MLB to move the draft to Omaha on the eve of the College World Series

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SAN DIEGO — We spend a lot of time on these pages criticizing Major League Baseball’s decisions. And yeah, they make a lot of questionable decisions (or logical decisions which serve questionable motives). But in the past day or so they’ve certainly gotten a couple of things right.

First was what we posted about last night: MLB moving to take marijuana off the banned substance list for minor leaguers. This, combined with the recent report that MLB/MLBPA are moving to a treatment, as opposed to a punishment-based regimen for opioids, shows that sense, as opposed to hysteria and optics, is beginning to move to the fore when it comes to baseball’s drug policies. It’s certainly welcome.

Also reported last night — by Kendall Rogers of the website d1baseball.com — Major League Baseball plans to move the amateur draft from the MLB Network studios in New Jersey to Omaha, Nebraska, and schedule it at just at the start of the College World Series. The move has not been officially announced yet, but I’d expect an MLB press release on it before we all get on our planes on Thursday morning.

It would be nicely coordinated too, Rogers says, coming just after the super regionals but before the actual CWS. This would allow the top players expected to go to all be on hand, either as players in the CWS or because, hey, they just got done and would probably be there anyway. It’s way better than putting a six guys in a green room in Secaucus. That’s always so awkward. You can tell they don’t really want to be there and don’t know what to do with themselves. In Omaha they’ll be among their friends, teammates, family, and counterparts. The atmosphere will almost certainly radically change for the better.

It’s still a very, very tall order to ever create the same level of interest in the MLB draft that exists for the NFL or NBA drafts, as the structure of college football and basketball and the fame of its stars is a totally different deal coming in. But this is a positive move forward for the baseball draft. Good job to whoever’s idea it was.