Set to debut Tuesday, McClellan eager to compete

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Rangers right-hander Kyle McClellan is ready to pitch in a game and compete for a spot on the Opening Day staff.

McClellan, who has been bothered by soreness in the back of his right shoulder, pitched batting practice on Saturday without any problems. He will likely make his Cactus League debut on Tuesday against the Brewers.

"I got loose great and felt good," McClellan said. "I didn't think about anything on the mound except making pitches. It was exciting to ramp it up and face hitters again."

McClellan, who was signed by the Rangers to a Minor League contract on Jan. 15, underwent shoulder surgery on July 10 last summer whilewith the Cardinals. He came into camp at full strength, but he was shut down after the first week because of soreness in his shoulder muscles.

McClellan, who was used primarily as a reliever during his five seasons with the Cardinals, came into camp as a candidate to be the Rangers' fifth starter. His physical issues have dropped him back in a race being led by Robbie Ross, but McClellan still has a chance to catch up if there are no more setbacks.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.