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Garland throws two scoreless; Walker struggles


PEORIA, Ariz. -- Still making adjustments early on in Spring Training, Mariners pitchers Jon Garland and Taijuan Walker took the mound Monday against the Rockies with the veteran tossing a couple clean frames and the young prospect struggling a bit.

Garland, who hasn't pitched in the Majors since 2011 due to multiple shoulder injuries, lasted two innings on Monday, giving up two hits and two walks while striking out a batter. He threw 32 pitches, 17 for strikes.

"My arm is feeling good," Garland said. "I was upset with my walks, because you're just giving them an opportunity to start something, but I was able to work quick to the plate and keep the ball on the ground, so I can't be too upset."

A non-roster invitee to Mariners camp, Garland is trying to win a back-end spot in Seattle's rotation. Counting Monday's effort, the 33-year-old now has three scoreless innings under his belt.

Garland added he's beginning to feel more relaxed on the mound even though the dry air in Arizona is affecting the movement on his pitches.

"Every time I'm out there, I feel more comfortable," he said. "It's just hard to get a true feel out here, though. The air affects everything out here, you have a tougher time gripping the ball and the ball in the hand feels different."

After Garland exited the game, Walker took over in the third and pitched two frames.

In his first two outings, the Mariners' No. 1 prospect threw three scoreless innings, allowing just one hit in the process. On Monday, however, Walker fought with his command.

Walking three batters and serving up four hits, the 20-year-old allowed three earned runs, including one coming off a home run from Nolan Arenado.

"I just wasn't locating my fastball, wasn't putting it where I wanted to, and so I was behind in the counts," Walker said. "I have to keep working ahead and get my offspeed over for strikes, too."

Walker threw 42 pitches, 22 for strikes.

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