The Rangers look to maintain winning ways when they head into Anaheim.
The Fourth of July found the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles
Angels tied atop the AL West Division standings. Now, two weeks and 10 games later, the
Rangers have opened a 4-game lead over the Halos thanks to an 11-game win
Texas will try and extend the winning run to an even dozen
games Tuesday night when the rivals begin a 3-game set at Angel Stadium in
Anaheim (10:05 PM ET). A battle of young
right-handers is scheduled with Alexi Ogando going for the Rangers against LA's
MLB odds suggest Texas
has a great chance of keeping its streak alive with the Rangers consensus -140
favorites on the money line and Tuesday's total set at 7.5 runs.
Pitching, both starting and relief, has been outstanding for
the Rangers during their 11-game stretch that started July 4 with a 13-4 win
over the Orioles. Texas hurlers have held opponents to two
runs or less in seven of the 11 games, posting four shutouts along the way.
Ogando (9-3, 2.92) has posted outstanding numbers in 2011
after solid stats as a reliever last year for Texas.
The 27-year-old Dominican ranks in the top 20 in the majors in ERA and
top 10 in WHIP, and the Rangers have won 11 of his 17 starts.
Aside from two-thirds of an inning in last week's All-Star
Game, Ogando hasn't pitched since July 6 when he got the dubya with seven good
innings against the Orioles as a heavy -175 home favorite in the betting odds. He's been much better at home than on the
road where the club is 3-4 in his seven away starts and Ogando's ERA is almost
a run higher at 3.51. Two of his road
defeats came against CC Sabathia and the Yankees, the irony being Ogando
replaced Sabathia on the AL
This will be his second start of the season vs. the Angels,
the other coming May 13 at home. Ogando
worked into the seventh of Texas'
4-1 win, the only run he allowed coming on an Erick Aybar homer. He made five relief appearances at Angel
Stadium last season, tossing 5.2 scoreless innings in the process.
Los Angeles is making a brief
stop at home following four games in Oakland
to begin the second half. The A's took
three of those contests while Texas was
sweeping four in Seattle,
making it very important for the Halos to win at least two of three in this
Chatwood (5-5, 3.62) has experienced tough luck and his own
poor pitching over the past 6-7 weeks with the Angels dropping five of his last
seven starts. Like Ogando, this is his
first assignment since July 6.
This will also be Chatwood's cherry against the Rangers. He's had more success on the road than at the
Big A in Anaheim
where the Angels are 3-7 in his 10 starts and Chatwood has walked two more
batters than he has struck out.
The clubs have split their first six meetings this season,
all of those games played in the Lone
Star State. The Angels won six of the nine played in Anaheim last season with
the UNDER holding a slight 5-4 edge.
Weather should be just about perfect on Tuesday for this matchup with clear
skies and a slight breeze blowing out to right-center. The series continues Wednesday with Texas' Derek Holland
gunning for his third-straight shutout in a matchup against LA's Dan
Haren. Thursday's finale is a matinee
with a pair of all-stars squaring off, CJ Wilson and Jered Weaver.