RHP Jeff Niemann said he exhausted every option available to relieve the pain in his throwing shoulder before finally deciding on the final option — surgery.

“You don’t want it to come to this, but we’ve done everything we can,” Niemann said. “It’s gotten us this far, but we just kind of needed a little boost to get all the way back, so unfortunately we had to make that tough choice and it was really the only option out there.”

Niemann will have surgery this morning at the Trinity Park Surgery Center in Arlington. Keith Meister, the Rangers’ team physician, will perform the surgery. Meister also performed surgery on Niemann in 2005 to shave the joint between his collarbone and shoulder. Niemann said tests weren’t clear on exactly what is wrong with his shoulder. Meister won’t know the full extent of the damage until the surgery. Regardless, Niemann put his recovery time at nine to 12 months.

“I know when he comes back and pitches he’s going to do it with a free and clear mind,” manager Joe Maddon said. “It’s unfortunate for him and us right now, but longevity-wise it’s something that can benefit him and us down the road.”

Niemann, who lost out on the final spot of the rotation this spring to RHP Roberto Hernandez, said he felt discomfort during the spring but was able to manage it between starts. He didn’t have that luxury once he joined the bullpen at the start of the regular season.

“In the bullpen you have to be ready every day, and my attempts to be able to throw a ball and be loose and warm and have the body ready to go pitch had no recovery time. It went downhill so fast,” he said. “It was the first time we experienced any backtracking at all during this time.”

Niemann said he talked to former Rays LHP J.P. Howell, who had similar surgery in May 2011. Howell told him to “buckle up.”

Watching Howell return to the majors is proof that Niemann can do the same.

“We have to be excited about coming back with a clean shoulder and see what we’re able to do,” Niemann said.