ARLINGTON -- The Rangers head out on their first three-city road trip with an important advantage at their disposal.
Their starting rotation.
Left-hander Derek Holland was the latest in the five-man rotation to give the Rangers a consistent start, going 7 1/3 innings and not walking anyone in a 5-3 victory over the Mariners on Thursday afternoon.
Holland threw 115 pitches, 79 of them for strikes as he commanded the zone. He got ahead of hitters, starting 16 of 28 Mariners with strike one. He allowed five hits and had eight strikeouts.
The Rangers' starters now have a 2.42 ERA through seven games, second best in the American League. They have helped their team get off to a 5-2 start with both losses coming in the ninth inning with closer Joe Nathan in the game.
"Every one of our starters has kept us in the game so far," manager Ron Washington said. "They can't control Ws. Offense controls Ws." The Rangers got enough offense from the top of the lineup, as Michael Young had four RBIs after being moved up to the No. 2 spot in the lineup with shortstop Elvis Andrus getting the day off. And leadoff hitter Ian Kinsler scored three more runs, giving him nine for the season to rank him among the American League leaders.
Young had three different run-producing hits. The Rangers scored in the first inning for the second consecutive game as Kinsler led off with a single, stole second base and scored on Young's single.
Twice Young gave the Rangers a three-run cushion, first in the fifth with a two-out two-run home run for a 3-0 lead, and again in the seventh with a two-out single. Kinsler was on in front of him both times.
"You always feed off the guys in front of you," said Young, who has seven RBIs in seven games. "Ian is getting on base a lot."