Banister credits Gallardo's work in first outing

Banister credits Gallardo's work in first outing

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- They put a pace-of-play clock in center field at Surprise Stadium. Rangers pitcher Yovani Gallardo didn't even notice in Wednesday's outing against the Royals.

"I had no idea," Gallardo said after pitching 1 2/3 innings in the Rangers' 13-2 loss. "I didn't see the clock in center field until I walked off the mound. I had no idea. Most of the guys aren't going to notice it. We want to go out and perform."

Gallardo was more intent on getting through his first Cactus League outing, and the results didn't look good on paper. Gallardo allowed four runs on six hits, with no walks and one strikeout. The reality is Gallardo pitched better than his linescore, according to manager Jeff Banister.

"I felt he pitched OK," Banister said. "He got chipped a couple of times. For the most part, he got the ball down and kept the ball inside. He battled through it."

The first batter Gallardo faced in the top of the third, Kendrys Morales, hit a high pop to left that fell in front of Ryan Rua for a double. Alex Rios followed with a bloop double over first baseman Prince Fielder. Three more singles brought home two more runs before the inning ended. Two of the hits were grounders, including one that could have been scored an error on third baseman Adrian Beltre.

"It happens when it's Spring Training," Gallardo said. "Get them out of the way. We haven't played in five months. The main thing is to go out, stay healthy and get the work in. I felt good."

Worth noting

• Ryan Ludwick hit a home run for the Rangers on Wednesday after going 2-for-2 in the intrasquad game on Sunday.

• With the Rangers trailing, 13-2, in the ninth, rookie Jorge Alfaro flied out to deep right. But he ran hard all the way and was approaching second base when the ball was caught. Banister walked to the other end of the dugout to compliment Alfaro on his hustle.

Joey Gallo was 0-for-2 with a flyout and a popout. He also had a couple of errant throws from third base, and Banister agreed that Gallo might be a little too eager to impress. Said Banister, "He's young. He'll start finding the barrel of the bat and do some nice things."

Lisalverto Bonilla pitched two innings and allowed only one unearned run, when center fielder Delino DeShields misplayed a fly ball in deep center field. Bonilla did not allow a hit, walked three and struck out two.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.