Ortiz has already failed in three chances for No. 16 after matching his career-best total set last season when he went 15-9. He has gone 0-2 with a 7.88 ERA in those three starts.
He gave up seven earned runs and nine hits in 3 2-3 innings of Monday’s 7-4 loss to the Oakland Athletics. The outing, one of Ortiz’ worst of the season, came just two days after Ortiz returned from a week in the Dominican Republic, where he attended his father’s funeral.
“Ramon was obviously pitching under difficult circumstances, but it was obvious that he struggled getting ahead in counts and had trouble putting hitters away,” manager Mike Scioscia said.
“Naturally it’s tough. Whether he pitched a good game or a bad game, it’s tough to go out there.”
However, Ortiz, who was pitching for the first time since Sept. 3, refused to use his father’s passing as an excuse for the rough outing.
“I don’t want to talk about my dad,” he said. “I had concentration. I felt good. I didn’t throw a lot of bad pitches. But they’re a good team, good hitters.”
The Rangers beat the Angels 13-4 on Saturday for their third straight win and fifth in six games. Alex Rodriguez hit two homers, and Hank Blalock added his first career grand slam for Texas, which had five home runs.
STANDINGS: Angels - 3rd place, 20 GB, AL West. Rangers - 4th place, 22 GB, AL West.
ANGELS PROBABLE STARTER: Ortiz (15-12, 5.11 ERA). The right-hander is 10-2 with a 4.20 ERA in 15 career starts against the Rangers.
RANGERS PROBABLE STARTER: John Thomson (13-13, 4.89 ERA). Thomson gave up three earned runs and nine hits in eight innings of a 10-5 win over the Seattle Mariners, snapping a three-start losing streak. The right-hander, who has already surpassed his previous career-high of eight wins, is 2-1 with a 4.66 ERA in three career starts against Anaheim.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Angels - Garret Anderson, .317 avg., 29 HRs, 116 RBIs and 77 runs; Adam Kennedy, 22 SBs. Rangers - Blalock and Michael Young, .309 avg.; Rodriguez, 46 HRs, 115 RBIs, 121 runs and 16 SBs.
SEASON SERIES: Rangers, 9-6.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Angels - LF Anderson was a late scratch Saturday due to tightness in his lower back. … C Jose Molina left during an at-bat in the fifth inning due to a left shoulder injury he suffered in a collision at home plate in the second inning. Scioscia said he would miss a few games. … RHP Ortiz is 7-5 with a 4.98 ERA in 14 starts on the road this season. Rangers - SS Rodriguez extended his major league home run lead to 46. … The Rangers have hit 137 homers at home this season, breaking Toronto’s American League mark of 134, set in 2000. The Colorado Rockies hold the top two major league marks with 149 (1996) and 144 (1999). … SS Rodriguez has 10 homers against Anaheim, tying a single-season club record against an opponent. 1B-DH Palmeiro had 10 against Seattle in 2001.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Angels - 31-48 on the road; Rangers - 43-37 at home.
INJURIES: Angels - 3B Troy Glaus (shoulder), 15-day DL; OF Darin Erstad (hamstring), 15-day DL; RHP Matt Wise (elbow), 60-day DL; C Bengie Molina (wrist), 60-day DL; 1B-DH Brad Fullmer (knee), 60-day DL; OF Anderson (back), day-to-day; C Jose Molina (shoulder), day-to-day. Rangers - INF Herbert Perry (shoulder), 60-day DL; OF Juan Gonzalez (calf), 60-day DL; OF Rusty Greer (neck), 60-day DL; OF Kevin Mench (wrist), 60-day DL; RHP Chan Ho Park (back), 60-day DL; RHP Ricardo Rodriguez (hip), 60-day DL; RHP Jeff Zimmerman (elbow), 60-day DL.