ARLINGTON -- The Rangers' Yu Darvish was the winning pitcher on Monday night in an 11-5 victory over the Mariners, making him the first pitcher since 1910 to win his Major League debut despite giving up four runs in the first inning.
The last to do it was Bill Steele of the 1910 Cardinals, giving up five runs in the first inning in a 14-7 victory over the Reds.
Darvish ended up going 5 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on eight hits, four walks and five strikeouts.
"The only thing I can say is it's not how you start, it's how you finish," manager Ron Washington said. "He finished strong. He could have easily thrown in the towel, but he didn't. He fits in well with this clubhouse because we never throw in the towel. I do feel it will get better."
Washington said Darvish learned a valuable lesson about what it's like to pitch for the Rangers.
"You keep battling and we'll get back in the ballgame," Washington said. "For his first time, maybe that's an experience he needed. To see what he did, to take the baseball and get into the sixth inning, I was proud of him. He knows we were behind him. As long as he was fighting, we were going to fight for him too."
Darvish is only the second Rangers pitcher to win his first big league start despite giving up five or more runs. Paul Mirabella did so on July 28, 1978, against the White Sox.