Texas Rangers

Rangers recap: Pitching, defense shine as Holland, bullpen shut out Cubs

Rangers Derek Holland happy with his five scoreless innings Wednesday

Derek Holland held the Cubs to four hits and struck out seven in five innings Wednesday as the Rangers won 5-0 at Surprise Stadium (Video by Stefan Stevenson/Star-Telegram).
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Derek Holland held the Cubs to four hits and struck out seven in five innings Wednesday as the Rangers won 5-0 at Surprise Stadium (Video by Stefan Stevenson/Star-Telegram).

The Texas Rangers snapped a six-game losing streak in Arizona in dominating fashion Wednesday afternoon. Derek Holland combined with three relievers to blank the Cubs in a 5-0 win at Surprise Stadium. Ian Desmond tripled in a run and threw out two runners from center field.

Pitching: Holland held the Cubs scoreless on four hits over five innings (61 pitches) to give the Rangers their best outing from a starter this spring. Matt Bush made his debut with the Rangers, going two scoreless innings. He had two strikeouts and a walk. In his first inning, he threw nine strikes and one ball, which was just outside, routinely hitting 95 to 97 mph with his fastball. His slider was as low as 78 mph, which he used to strike out Jorge Soler and Jason Vosler swinging to end his innings. Keone Kela and Shawn Tolleson both pitched scoreless innings to finish the game.

Hitting: Hanser Alberto had two hits, including a hustling double with two outs in the fifth. Desmond’s triple to the left-center gap scored Alberto to give the Rangers a 1-0 lead. Prince Fielder followed with an opposite-field looper down the left-field line to make it 2-0. Pedro Ciriaco had two more hits to hold his spring batting average at .500. The Rangers added three runs in the eighth after Mitch Moreland singled with one out, followed by a Jared Hoying double, a wild pitch and a sacrifice fly.

Notable: Desmond made two spectacular plays in center field. In the second inning, he ran down a deep fly at the wall and doubled up Soler at first base. In the third, he fielded a shallow bloop and threw out Munenori Kawasaki at home.

Ian Desmond made a run-saving play Wednesday with a catch at the center-field wall in the Rangers' 5-0 win (video by Jeff Wilson).

Ian Desmond continues to practice daily in left field and is starting to see results (video by Jeff Wilson).

Stefan Stevenson: 817-390-7760, @StevensonFWST

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