SURPRISE, Ariz. — The moment Alexi Ogando had been awaiting all spring finally arrived Sunday during his last start before the Texas Rangers leave the desert.“Today he put everything together,” manager Ron Washington said.The right-hander tossed six scoreless innings, allowing only three hits and a walk while striking out five as the Rangers beat Cincinnati for a second straight day, 7-2.Lance Berkman swatted a two-run homer and drove in three runs to back Ogando, who lowered his Cactus League ERA from 4.11 to 2.95. He’s on schedule to pitch the Rangers’ exhibition game Friday in San Antonio and the third game of the regular season.“You work day in and day out, and you try to have the best result,” said Ogando, who threw 56 strikes out of 82 pitches. “It was really great to have this outing before the season starts. There’s always something you can work on, some details or some little things, but I think I’m ready.”Ogando said he worked on his slider and getting the ball down in the zone. He allowed a pair of doubles, but both were balls that hit in the infield before squirting into the outfield corner.On Tuesday, Ogando threw elevated pitches that led to a pair of first-inning home runs against the Cubs, but he had seven groundouts and only two flyouts against the Reds.“It’s a process, and he’s gotten better every time,” Washington said. “He finally got there. That’s what I like to see him do. I knew it was in motion.”Berkman, who started at first base for the second time this spring, took Bronson Arroyo deep in the fourth inning and drove in Craig Gentry with a sacrifice fly for the game’s first run.
Jeff Wilson, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @JeffWilson