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Sunday, March 14, 2010
Game thoughts: Holland, Salty and others

By Richard Durrett

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Dodgers defeated the Rangers, 6-4, in a split-squad game at Camelback Ranch in Glendale on Sunday. Some thoughts from that game:

* Derek Holland pitched well. He pleased general manager Jon Daniels, pitching coach Mike Maddux and, most important, himself. "I had some ground to gain," Holland said. His performance had to help that. He worked mainly on his fastball, curve and slider (he didn't throw a changeup). He threw just 28 pitches in three innings and threw another 15 in the bullpen. More on Holland later.

* Catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia said he felt good about his first game action since he was scratched from last Tuesday's game because of shoulder soreness from loose scar tissue. Saltalamacchia had a double and had to make one throw to second base. It was a good one, but Elvis Andrus couldn't quite glove it and Saltalamacchia was charged with an error (another example of how you can't just look at the box score sometimes).

* First baseman Chris Davis had two more hits on Sunday, raising his spring training average to .538. He said he's seeing the ball well and feeling comfortable. He's also conscious of staying patient and smart at the plate. "I'd rather be down in the count 0-1 than 0-for-1 for the at-bat," said Davis, noting that he doesn't want to swing at a bad first pitch.

* Mitch Moreland, who played right field for the final few innings, made a great throw to get a runner out at home in the seventh inning. Moreland struck out in his only at-bat, but is still batting an impressive .389 for the spring.

* CF Julio Borbon said one of his spring training focuses is hitting against lefties. He got a single off one in the fifth.

* 3B Esteban German was 1-for-3 and also showed some heads up baserunning, going from first to third on Borbon's single to center in the fifth.

* RF Nelson Cruz hit a hard double to right in his first at-bat, but also had a defensive issue. He tried to dive for a ball that was clearly out of his reach and it rolled past him for a triple.