Holland impresses in scoreless start against Mariners

Moreland leads offense with two-run home run in tie game

Holland impresses in scoreless start against Mariners

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Mike Zunino, getting a start at designated hitter, had two home runs for the Mariners in Friday afternoon's 4-4 tie against the Rangers. He had a solo shot off Jon Edwards in the fourth inning and a two-run home run off Spencer Patton in the sixth. He was 2-for-3 in the game and is 8-for-23 this spring.

Zunino is the Mariners' starting catcher, but was used at DH so that Nelson Cruz could start in right field.

"We'll let him do the DHing," Zunino said. "But it's always nice to just be able to get some more at-bats and just focus on that. I was able to do that. I'm just trying to get myself in a position to hit every at-bat, every pitch, and I was able work on that today."

Rangers left-hander Derek Holland, who had been sidelined with a sore left shoulder, made his first start of the Cactus League and pitched three scoreless innings on just 33 pitches.

"I was antsy to get out there and pitch," Holland said. "I was on fuego, I was going 100 miles per hour trying to get out there."

Holland likely has three starts before the season starts. That should be good enough to get his pitch count up to 75-80 pitches.

"I need to continue to improve every time out," Holland said. "Get the off-speed where it needs to be. Other than that, I'm happy. My strength is great, my conditioning is great. I just need to get my off-speed in order."

Mariners starter Roenis Elias went four innings and allowed two runs, one earned, on five hits, two walks and four strikeouts.

The Rangers trailed 3-2 into the seventh before Mitch Moreland hit a two-run home run. The home run came off Mariners reliever Tom Wilhelmsen on the ninth pitch of the at-bat. The Mariners tied it up in the top of the eighth on a home run by Alex Jackson, the Mariners' 19-year-old first-round pick from 2014 out of Rancho Bernardo (Ca.) High.

Up next: For the second straight day, the Rangers will have a split-squad doubleheader, hosting the Brewers at 3:05 p.m. CT (Gameday Audio) in Surprise and playing the Dodgers at 1:05 p.m. CT (MLB.TV) in San Antonio. Colby Lewis will pitch against the Brewers while Anthony Ranaudo and Lisalverto Bonilla pitch against the Dodgers. Reliever Tanner Scheppers is also expected to pitch in a Cactus League game for the first time during the game against the Dodgers.

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.