- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 21, 2014

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Nick Tepesch and Robbie Ross helped the Texas Rangers hold off the Seattle Mariners.

Tepesch, back from the minor leagues, earned his first major league victory in more than 10 months and the Rangers edged the Seattle Mariners 4-3 on Wednesday.

Ross, back in the bullpen after an unsuccessful stint in the rotation, bailed Tepesch out of a seventh-inning jam.

Neal Cotts, whose ERA has ballooned from 1.11 in 2013 to 4.34 this season, had a strong eighth.

Joakim Soria, back in a closer’s role this year for the first time since 2011, pitched a perfect ninth inning for his eighth save in eight opportunities.

The Rangers‘ offense had three first-inning runs and Shin-Soo Choo’s leadoff home run in the bottom of the fifth that broke a 3-3 tie.

Choo’s fifth homer went into the bullpen in left-center.

“Two strikes, I was in a rough spot. I think about more (getting) on base,” he said.

“Got a home run that got up in that gust a little bit, that’s it,” Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. “It’s a tough ballpark to pitch in, but I thought (Chris Young) did a pretty darn good job for us.

Texas turned two double plays. The second was on Ross‘ second pitch after entering the game with one out and runners on first and second for the Mariners. Pinch hitter Stefen Romero grounded to Adrian Beltre, who stepped on third base and threw to first to complete the inning-ending double play.

“I was thinking, ‘Gosh, here we go! I’m in a situation where I like to be.’ I was pretty amped,” Ross said. “I wanted to be out of that inning without those runs scoring.”

Tepesch (1-0) allowed five hits and two walks in 6 1-3 innings for his first win since defeating Houston 10-5 on July 5, 2013. The second-year pitcher threw a career-high 112 pitches.

It was his second start this season for the Rangers after being recalled from Triple-A Round Rock, where he was 6-1.

Texas manager Ron Washington has noticed a difference.

“He has an out pitch right now. He’s got that slider working, and he’s able to locate his sinker. With that going on and commanding the baseball, I think there’s the difference right there.”

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