03/19/10 6:40 PM ET
Marte's slam powers Laffey, Indians
Tribe hits three homers in support of sharp rotation hopeful
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
at Surprise, Ariz.
Friday, March 19
Rangers at the plate: Vladimir Guerrero was hitting .200 (6-for-30) when he lined a double to right-center in the fourth inning. He scored on a single by Chris Davis. Guerrero also added a single in the sixth while going 2-for-3.Indians at the plate: Andy Marte hit a grand slam to give the Indians a 4-0 lead in the first inning. It was Marte's second home run of the spring, and he was the first Indians player to have more than one home run until Shin-Soo Choo went deep in the seventh. Shelley Duncan hit his first home run with a solo shot in the third. Rangers on the mound: Brandon McCarthy allowed Marte's grand slam and threw 42 pitches in the first inning. But he still managed to get through four innings while allowing another home run. Overall, he allowed five runs on five hits, three walks and four strikeouts. He threw 78 pitches. Indians on the mound: Left-hander Aaron Laffey helped make his case for a spot in the Indians' rotation, allowing one run on four hits. He walked one and struck out three. He now has a 4.22 ERA on the spring. Worth noting: Guerrero made his first start of the season in right field. He played six innings out there, and the only ball hit to him was a single by Michael Brantley in the second inning. Cactus League records: Rangers 6-9; Indians 8-4 Up next: Colby Lewis will start and Derek Holland will pitch in relief for the Rangers when they host the Dodgers at 3:05 p.m. CT on Saturday at Surprise Stadium. Holland pitched against the Dodgers last week and threw three scoreless innings. He is still in the running for one of the final two spots in the Rangers' rotation. The game will be broadcast on MLB.TV, KXTA Ch. 21 and KRLD 1080 AM.
The Indians get their only preseason look at Oakland on Saturday, returning to Goodyear Ballpark to host the A's. Rotation candidate Mitch Talbot is scheduled to start for the Tribe, and the relievers to follow will include David Huff, also in the running for a starter's job. The game will be broadcast on Gameday Audio and WTAM 1100 AM.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.