ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- It's Alexi Ogando's turn to end this nosedive.
Rangers manager Ron Washington said after Monday's 6-2 loss to Tampa Bay that Ogando will start Tuesday night as the skipper looks for someone to spark his team and end a seven-game losing streak.
Ogando gives the Rangers the best chance to keep Tampa Bay off the scoreboard for the first part of the game. It's the absolute right decision.
"He's been throwing the ball well and I figure we can get three, maybe four out of him," Washington said. "I'll give him a chance to do it."
Ogando has thrown the ball well since returning from his third stint on the disabled list, pitching six scoreless innings in four games. His fastball has zip again and his slider has the bite that made him a dominant pitcher in 2010 and '11.
The Rangers need someone to get them out of a funk; even always-upbeat players like Elvis Andrus -- who deserves a gold star for being at his locker after Monday night's loss -- are having a rough time.
"It's pretty tough right now," Andrus said. "It looks like nothing is going our way. ... I'm getting tired of talking about it. We just have to keep playing. That's the only way we're going to get out of it. Go out and play baseball."
ON DECK: The Rangers will try to end their skid as right-hander Alexi Ogando starts against Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson at 6:10 p.m. at Tropicana Field.
QUESTION OF THE DAY: What do you think about the decision to start Alexi Ogando on Tuesday night?