Rangers turn attention to rival Angels

( - The Texas Rangers will try to get back on track Friday night at Angel Stadium when they kick off a weekend series with their American League West rivals, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

Texas was swept at home this week by the Oakland Athletics and is coming off Wednesday's lopsided 12-1 setback, its fourth straight loss.

Starter Robbie Ross, Jr. let the flood gates open with a seven-run third inning, and the A's offense went on to collect 17 hits for the game. Rangers All-Star shortstop Elvis Andrus committed a pair of costly errors and was eventually benched by manager Ron Washington in the sixth inning.

"It was one of those days you want to forget," Andrus said. "It was not a fun game but there is nothing else you can do but turn the page, take (Thursday) off, clear your mind and be ready for Friday."

The Angels were also idle on Thursday, but unlike the Rangers they are looking to keep the momentum going from this week's three-game sweep over the Cleveland Indians.

On Wednesday, southpaw C.J. Wilson went eight innings and allowed only one run as the Halos cruised to a 7-1 victory to finish off the sweep. Hank Conger hit a two-run homer in the second inning and Mike Trout later tacked on a two-run double to provide Wilson with more than enough support to earn the win.

"There's a different feeling in the clubhouse right now," Trout said. "We're having a lot more fun. The guys are coming together. It's where we want to be."

Washington has also taken notice.

"They are a tough team, always have been," the skipper said. "Mike Scioscia manages those guys so they'll be ready to play. They have a healthy Albert (Pujols) and their starting pitching is holding things together. It should be a good series because they are always tough."

Taking the hill for the Angels is left-hander Hector Santiago, who is winless through his first five starts. He went just 4 1/3 innings at Yankee Stadium his last time out as he was tagged for four earned runs on six hits and a walk.

For Texas, Colby Lewis will make his fourth start since coming off the disabled list. He has yet to make it through the sixth inning after giving up three earned runs in five frames at Seattle on Saturday. Lewis is 4-4 with a 4.32 ERA in 12 career starts and two relief appearances against the Angels.

This is the first meeting of the season between these longtime division rivals. Texas dominated last season's head-to-head series with the Halos, winning 15 of 19 meetings.