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2011 ASG: Ogando gets two outs in his appearance

Tuesday's game between the red-hot Rangers -- winners of 11 straight games -- and the Angels will not only serve as the opener to a crucial division series, it will also see two young pitchers make their first starts in nearly two weeks.

Neither Rangers' All-Star Alexi Ogando nor the Halos' Tyler Chatwood has thrown for their teams since July 6, though for very different reasons.

Rangers manager Ron Washington arranged his rotation before the All-Star break to give Ogando some extra time off in the midst of his first season as a starter. Ogando did throw some in last Tuesday's Midsummer Classic, but he only totaled six pitches, retiring both batters he faced on ground balls.

Ogando said he isn't sure how the layoff will affect him, but Washington isn't concerned. The Texas skipper expects the type of effort that has become routine through Ogando's stellar 2011 campaign, in which he's amassed a sparkling 9-3 record with a 2.92 ERA.

"I expect to see the same thing we have been seeing," Washington said. "I didn't see any fatigue in the All-Star Game. We had a chance to give him extra rest, so we did it. We expect him to pitch like he always has."

Chatwood's layoff came about in an entirely different manner. The 21-year-old rookie was sent to Triple-A Salt Lake to make room on the 25-man roster for heralded center fielder Mike Trout.

In his return to the Angels' rotation, the right-hander's primary objective will be to limit the free passes he issues. Though Chatwood owns a solid 3.62 ERA, he's walked just as many batters (52) as he's struck out in 99 1/3 innings of work.

Chatwood made one start for the Bees, getting tagged with a loss after allowing two runs on four hits and five walks in three innings on Thursday. Halos manager Mike Scioscia suggested not putting too much stock in that unimpressive linescore.

"He really worked on his changeup," Scioscia said. "The linescore wasn't great because he was working on a lot of stuff. He felt good."

Rangers: Kendrick admires Young
Michael Young has stood as one of the game's best hitters over the last decade, and he's also served as a role model for the Angels' Howard Kendrick. The two became more familiar with each other during last week's All-Star festivities, as Kendrick earned his first career trip to the Midsummer Classic.

"Michael Young, that guy is one of the flat-out best hitters in baseball," Kendrick said. "Being in the same division and seeing him so much has been fun for me. He's had quite a few 200-hit seasons, and he has moved from second base to shortstop to third, and now he's playing some first base. To see him do that, and take it in stride, tells you a lot about the kind of person he is."

• Ian Kinsler's season-high 12-game hit streak came to an end Sunday, as he went 0-for-4. It was the third-longest streak by a Ranger this season -- Michael Young has put together streaks of 15 and 13 games.

Angels: Wells at home in Arlington
Though Vernon Wells was born in Louisiana, he grew up primarily in Arlington, and has flourished against Texas throughout his career. The three-time Gold Glover is hitting .282 with 15 home runs, 60 RBIs, and a .837 on-base-plus-slugging percentage in 80 games against the Rangers. Wells did particularly heavy damage last season, smacking eight home runs knocking in 16 runs against Texas in just 34 at-bats.

"Last year kind of inflated things a little bit," Wells said. "Some years you're swinging the bat well when you play a certain team. Coming to a new team, you want that trend to continue. Their pitching has continued to excel. Those three young guys [Matt Harrison, Derek Holland, Ogando] are three of the most talented guys in the game. It's just a matter of us having good at-bats as a ballclub, one through nine."

• The Angels will induct the late Gene Autry -- the club's original owner -- into their Hall of Fame prior to the game. Autry will become the ninth member of the team's Hall of Fame, joining Nolan Ryan, Bobby Grich, Rod Carew, Brian Downing, Chuck Finley, Don Baylor, Jim Fregosi, and Jimmie Reese. Ryan is slated to throw out the first pitch.

Worth noting
• Texas' 11-game win streak is the longest in the Majors this year.

• Thirty of the last 42 games between the Rangers and Angels have been decided by three runs or fewer.

• The Angels and Rangers enter the series having split their six previous meetings this season, all of which were played in Texas.

• After beginning the season just 15-20 at home, the Angels went 11-2 on a 13-game homestand before the All-Star break. Comments