06/30/10 1:57 PM ET
Vlad 'happy to be back' in Anaheim
By Rhett Bollinger / MLB.com
Guerrero, who batted .319 with 173 homers and 616 RBIs in his time with the Angels, said he had no hard feelings about his former club and that he was excited to return to Anaheim.
"I'm very happy to be back," Guerrero said through a translator. "I saw some cousins of mine I hadn't seen in a long time and also being back after spending six years here is very special."
Guerrero, who was a fan favorite in Anaheim after winning the American League MVP Award in his first season with the team in 2004, said before Tuesday's series opener that he's hoping to get a positive response from the home crowd.
"I want to take a wait and see approach on that but I don't think did anything bad here so hopefully what I'll hear is applause," Guerrero said. "I don't want to build it up too much but I'm excited to see what happens."
Guerrero has been a force while with the Rangers, as he enters the three-game set batting .327 with 15 homers and 60 RBIs in 71 games. Texas manager Ron Washington said it's all because he's finally healthy after batting knee injuries last season that limited him to a career-low .295 batting average along with 15 homers and 50 RBIs.
"He did everything he could over the winter to get healthy, and so far we've kept him that way," Washington said. "I'm not surprised, and I don't think anyone in this part of the country is surprised because we've seen it before."
Hamilton extends hit streak to 22 games
ANAHEIM -- Rangers left fielder Josh Hamilton extended his hitting streak to a career-best 22 games with a single in the third inning against Angels right-hander Joel Pineiro in the Rangers' 6-5 loss on Tuesday at Angel Stadium.
Hamilton, who extended his streak with a line drive to right field, also broke the Rangers record for most hits in a month with 48 to eclipse Mickey Rivers and Frank Catalanotto, who each had 47 in August 1980 and August 2001, respectively. It was Hamilton's lone hit of the game, as he went 1-for-5 with an RBI groundout coming in the fifth inning.
Hamilton also made the last out of the game against Angels closer Brian Fuentes on a groundout to shortstop Erick Aybar.
But Hamilton has simply mashed the ball recently, as has a .462 batting average (42-for-91) with nine homers and 29 RBIs during his streak. It has been part of a torrid month, as he's hitting a Major League-best .457 in June with nine homers and 31 RBIs.
Hamilton, who is hitting .347 with 18 homers and 58 RBIs in 73 games on the season, said his success has come because of a change in his mechanics with the elimination of his toe tap and because he has changed his approach during batting practice.
"I'm not trying to hit homers on every pitch anymore," Hamilton said of his batting practice routine. "I'm trying to hit line drives and try to barrel it up and try to have a solid batting practice. It's helped tremendously."
Manager Ron Washington, though, said the real reason for his success is that he is healthy after battling various injuries last season.
"That's the key -- his health," Washington said. "I think as long as he's healthy, even if he's not as hot as he is right now, he'd still be hurting some people."
With visa problems over, Beltre to debut
ANAHEIM -- Right-hander Omar Beltre will make his long-awaited Major League debut on Wednesday after visa issues did not allow him to enter the United States from 2005-09.
Beltre, 26, went through a five-year ban from entering the U.S. for his involvement in a human-trafficking ring in 2004 in the Dominican Republic and was understandably excited about the prospects of making his debut against the Angels.
"It's been a special thing that's happened to me," Beltre said. "I worked really hard, and I'm happy it happened. When you work hard you get good results, and I've been working hard, and this is the fruit of it."
Beltre also was excited about being reunited with Rangers right-hander Alexi Ugando, who also was banned from the U.S. for five years before the two were granted visas in February and participated in Spring Training.
Beltre, though, battled elbow problems during Spring Training and was sent to Triple-A Oklahoma City where he posted an 0-5 record and a 2.39 ERA in 15 appearances, including five starts.
It was enough to impress manager Ron Washington, who decided to give Beltre the nod with right-hander Colby Lewis getting an additional two days of rest with his start being moved back to Friday against the White Sox.
"He's a strike-thrower so that's a good thing," Washington said of Beltre. "He has good movement. I think tomorrow he'll go out there and try to pitch to the game plan and execute, and if he does that he'll keep us in the game. And that's what all we want."
Lewis' start pushed but not for health reasons
ANAHEIM -- Rangers manager Ron Washington insisted that right-hander Colby Lewis is healthy and that was not the reason for his scheduled start against the Angels on Wednesday being pushed back two days to Friday against the White Sox.
He also said that pushing Lewis back two days means he'll make one fewer start leading up to the All-Star break, which begins on July 12.
"There's nothing wrong with him health-wise or physically," Washington said. "None of that has anything do with it. We're just trying to monitor our pitchers."
Harden to throw side session Wednesday
ANAHEIM -- Injured right-hander Rich Harden made the trip with the Rangers to Anaheim and is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Wednesday.
Harden, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since June 12 with a left gluteal muscle strain, threw his first bullpen session on Sunday.
Harden, whom the Rangers signed to a one year, $6.5 million deal with a mutual option for 2011, is 3-3 with a 5.68 ERA in 13 starts this season.
Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.