LAS VEGAS (AP) - Robbie Ross excelled out of the bullpen last year for the Texas Rangers. He hopes to do the same as a starter in 2013.
Mitch Moreland hit a two-run homer off Carlos Villanueva, Ross pitched three scoreless innings and the Texas Rangers beat the Chicago Cubs 8-5 in a matchup of split squads.
Ross didn't make things easy on himself, though, stranding six runners - including leaving the bases loaded in the third. He allowed four hits, walked three and struck out four
``I should have went five innings to help my team more,' said Ross, who threw 80 pitches. ``I was trying to do the best I could (to go five).'
Ross was 6-0 with a 2.22 ERA in 58 appearances in his rookie season.
Rangers reliever Coty Woods worked two perfect innings. A Rule 5 pick, he needs to make the major league club or Texas will have to offer him back to Colorado for $25,000, half the price they paid to acquire him at the winter meetings draft.
In his previous appearance, Woods allowed two hits and a run against Oakland in the ninth inning.
``Last Thursday, it wasn't that bad,' Woods said. ``I felt my stuff was better last time and I rolled it into today. Obviously, I don't want to lose this opportunity. I'm happy with the opportunity the Rangers gave me. If it doesn't work out - it doesn't work out.'
Woods has struck out nine in 8 1-3 innings this spring and has a 2.18 ERA. He has not allowed a run six of eight appearances.
Villanueva pitched four innings, allowing four hits and three runs. He walked two and struck out two.
Jose Felix also hit a two-run homer in seventh for Texas.
Nate Schierholtz homered to right leading off the sixth and Tim Saunders had a two-run shot in the eighth for the Cubs.
Chad Bell got the save, striking out Brad Nelson with the bases loaded.
NOTES: Rangers LHP Derek Holland will pitch in a minor league game on Tuesday. Holland was thought to have come down with food poisoning during the WBC. . Elvis Andrus quickly upped his hitting streak to nine games with a single to center leading off the game for the Rangers. He scored on Moreland's home run. .. The teams used 13 pitchers with Texas putting seven on the mound. . This concluded the second straight year that the two teams played a two-game weekend series at Cashman Field. The teams drew 17,800 for the games, which they split. The Cubs have played in Las Vegas every season since 2005.
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