The last time Tim Lincecum faced the Texas Rangers, he was dominant while clinching the San Francisco Giants' first World Series in 56 years.
He hasn't come close to being that effective lately.
Lincecum will try to end the longest win drought of his career and help the Giants continue their home success in the finale of this series with the sputtering Rangers on Sunday.
Lincecum (2-6, 5.83 ERA) beat Texas (34-26) twice during the 2010 World Series, including a dazzling performance in Game 5. The right-hander collected 10 strikeouts while allowing one run and three hits in eight innings of a 3-1 road victory, as the Giants (34-26) won their first championship since 1954 when they called New York home.
The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner might be trying to draw some inspiration from that performance in order to end one of the worst stretches of his six-year career.
Lincecum hasn't won in seven starts, going 0-4 with a 5.90 ERA. Another loss will match the longest losing streak of his career, when he dropped all five starts from Aug. 5-27, 2010.
He was victimized by a big inning Tuesday, allowing all four runs he was charged with in the second before leaving after the sixth and not getting a decision in a 6-5 defeat at San Diego.
"Minus the second inning, when things kind of unraveled, every other inning was pretty good," said Lincecum, who tied his season high with eight strikeouts. "There are still the crooked innings but the innings outside of those have gotten a better."
Lincecum may be in for some improvement against the Rangers, who have hit .219 while losing three of four.
The Giants limited them to five hits Saturday, winning 5-2 after losing the opener 5-0 a day earlier.
"You usually don't have everybody in the lineup struggling at once," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "It will come back around. We have a track record. These guys can hit. I don't have an answer other than to keep getting after it."
While San Francisco has won 10 of 13 at home, the Rangers are 3-6 on this 10-game road trip.
Josh Hamilton has struggled, going 7 for 37 with one homer and two RBIs. The solo shot came in the opener of this series, and he followed that up by going 1 for 3 with a double Saturday.
He's 0 for 6 versus Lincecum.
Alexi Ogando (1-0, 2.27) is scheduled to get his first start of the season with Derek Holland on the disabled list due to a fatigued throwing shoulder and a stomach virus that has caused him to lose nearly 15 pounds.
Ogando was 13-8 with a 3.51 ERA in 31 games - 29 starts - last year, but was moved to the bullpen in 2012. The right-hander has appeared in 27 games in relief, holding opponents to a .189 average while fanning 33 with seven walks in 31 2-3 innings.
He hasn't gone more than two innings or thrown more than 39 pitches in any outing, so he's not expected to go deep versus the Giants.
"I think he'll be able to get us at least 60 pitches," Washington told the team's official website. "A lot will depend on how many quick outs he gets. If he gets some quick outs early, he could get us five or six innings."
Ogando has faced San Francisco twice, allowing one hit in 3 2-3 innings out of the bullpen during the World Series.
The Associated Press News Service
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