at Surprise, Ariz.
Friday, March 24 Rangers at the plate: Vladimir Guerrero was 2-for-2, his third consecutive two-hit game. Guerrero does not have a home run this spring, but he has raised his average to .316. Josh Hamilton returned to the Rangers after a day in Dallas to get his dental work done. He was 1-for-2 and is hitting .375 in the Cactus League.
Cubs at the plate: Manager Lou Piniella said before the game he wanted to see Chad Tracy start knocking the ball around the park. Tracy complied with a three-run double in the first inning and a two-run double in the sixth. Tracy entered the game with one extra-base hit and one RBI in 29 previous at-bats. Kosuke Fukudome was 3-for-3. Rangers on the mound: Brandon McCarthy continues to pitch his way out of the rotation competition. He allowed four runs in the first and went 3 1/3 innings overall. He allowed eight hits and four walks while driving his ERA up to 8.03. Rangers catcher Taylor Teagarden threw out Andres Blanco twice trying to steal, accounting for two of the 10 outs that McCarthy recorded. Cubs on the mound: Sean Marshall, competing for one the spots in the rotation, advanced his case by holding the Rangers to one unearned run in four innings. He allowed three hits, walked one and struck out five. Jeff Gray made his first Cactus League appearance. He has been sidelined with a strained groin, injured before camp opened. The right-hander gave up an infield hit, then retired the next three batters. Worth noting: The Rangers have lost five straight and nine of their last 11 games. They have had three losing streaks of four or more games. Cactus League records: Rangers 6-13; Cubs 12-8-2 Up next: The Cubs make their last trip to Tucson, Ariz., on Thursday to face the D-backs. First pitch is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. CT, and MLB.com will carry an exclusive live webcast. It's a big game for left-hander Tom Gorzelanny, who is one of four pitchers battling for the two openings in the rotation. The Cubs will make a decision on how they make up the rotation and bullpen after this game. Derek Holland pitches on Thursday against the Angels at 3:05 p.m. CT in Tempe, Ariz. The game will be broadcast back in Texas on KXTA Ch. 21 and is available on MLB.TV. Holland threw a three-hit shutout against the Angels last year, beating them 5-0 on Aug. 9 in his only career complete game. Colby Lewis will pitch in a Minor League game.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less