Right-hander has not allowed a run in 18.0 innings this spring

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(ISN) – PEORIA, Ariz. – The Mariners got early run support and a stellar start from right-hander Taijuan Walker en route to a 3-2 win over the Chicago Cubs in Cactus League play on Wednesday night in front of 11,224 fans at Peoria Stadium.

The Mariners evened their Cactus League record at 10-10-2.

Taijuan Walker, who is vying for the final spot in the rotation, allowed just two hits and one walk while striking out six in 6.0 scoreless frames against the Cubs. He has not allowed a run in his 5 starts (18.0 innings) this spring while striking out 19. The Mariners lowest spring training ERA in club history belongs to left-hander Matt Young who had a 0.44 ERA (1 ER, 20.1 IP) in 1983.

Seattle jumped out to an early lead in the first inning, manufacturing a run on a leadoff single by Rickie Weeks, a single by Robinson Canó and a walk to load the bases by Nelson Cruz. Third baseman Kyle Seager followed with a sacrifice fly to center to bring in the game’s first run.

Catcher Mike Zunino led off the fifth and celebrated his 24th birthday by jumping on the first pitch for an opposite field solo home run, his fourth of the spring. Later that inning, Austin Jackson singled with two outs and came around to score on a Canó double to the right-center field gap.

Relievers Fernando Rodney (1.0 IP), Tyler Olson (0.1 IP), Carson Smith (0.2 IP) and Dominic Leone (1.0 IP) closed out the game to preserve the win.

LINESCORE 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
CUBS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 – 2 6 0
MARINERS 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 X – 3 6 1
W – Taijuan Walker (2-0); L – Travis Wood (1-1); SV – Leone (1)
CHC – Wood, Strop (6), Coke (7), Rondon (8) and Montero.
SEA – Walker, Rodney (7), Olson (8), Smith (8), Leone (9) and Zunino, Sucre (7)
Home Runs – SEA: Zunino (4); CHC: None
Attendance – 11,224 Time – 2:19 Temp – 83°

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