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Looking Ahead

Angels

June 23, 2002|Bob Rohwer

Opponent: Texas Rangers

Series: Monday, doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m.; Tuesday, 5 p.m.; Wednesday, 5 p.m.; Thursday, 5 p.m. (all times PDT).

Site: The Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.

Matchup: The Angels are the only AL team to use only five starters this season, but they won't hold that distinction much longer.

Playing 14 games in 13 days, they plan to recall right-hander John Lackey from triple-A Salt Lake City to make his major league debut during Monday's doubleheader, which was scheduled after the rainout of the April 7 game. The Angels have dominated the Rangers this season, winning six of eight.

Ivan Rodriguez, the Rangers' popular 30-year-old catcher, is eligible for free agency after this season. He would like to spend the rest of his career in Texas, but he's also is expected to seek at least $15 million a season in his new contract. He's not likely to get that from Ranger owner Tom Hicks, who is planning to slash the team's $105-million payroll after this season. Rodriguez is in the final year of a $42-million, five-year contract.

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Opponent: Dodgers

Series: Friday, 7 p.m.; Saturday, 7 p.m.; Sunday, 5 p.m.

Site: Edison Field.

Matchup: After beating the Dodgers in the series opener, 8-4, at Dodger Stadium on June 14, the Angels dropped the next two games, 10-5 and 5-4. Their losing streak reached four games--the club's longest since dropping six in a row in the second week of the season--before they beat the Cardinals in St. Louis on Thursday.

Angel right-hander Ramon Ortiz gave up four solo home runs to the Dodgers, but those were the only hits he surrendered in the series opener, pushing his complete-game total to three heading into this weekend. The Angels scored six runs on seven hits in three innings against Dodger starter Kazuhisa Ishii, handing the left-hander only his second defeat.

The Angels are 14-15 against the Dodgers since the start of interleague play, having won the series four games to two each of the past two seasons. To equal that this season, it will take a sweep of these three games at Edison Field, where the Angels hold a 7-6 edge.

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