Rangers Minor League Roundup – 5/9

The Round Rock Express suffered a tough defeat on Wednesday, as Salt Lake erased a four-run deficit by posting a five-spot in the bottom of the ninth inning. Lone Star Dugout takes a look at all of the day's minor league action in the Texas Rangers' system.

AAA: Round Rock 9 – (@) Salt Lake 10
L - Scheppers (0-2)
HR - Bianucci (8), Butler (6)
17-17, 4.0 GB

Salt Lake picked up a big come-from-behind victory over the Express on Wednesday, coming back from seven runs down in the final four innings. Round Rock led 9-2 going into the bottom of the sixth.

The Bees plated five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning for the improbable walkoff victory.

Closer Tanner Scheppers (3.45 ERA/.250 BAA), who has been lights-out of late, suffered the loss. The hard-throwing righty surrendered two runs in two-thirds of an inning, giving up three hits and a walk. He struck out one.

Scheppers came in with two on and nobody out in the ninth. His frame went as follows––three-run homer, strikeout, lineout, double, walk, single.

For the season, Scheppers has allowed six runs on 15 hits in 15.2 innings, walking four and striking out 17.

While the Round Rock pitching scuffled in Salt Lake's hitter-friendly environment for the second consecutive day, the bats thrived once again.

Right fielder Joey Butler (.309/.414/.553) went 3-for-4 with a double and a home run for the second straight game. He drove in five runs.

Catcher Dusty Brown (.358/.493/.642) was 2-for-2 with a double and two walks. The 29-year-old Brown has reached base in all nine of his plate appearances against the Bees.

Mike Bianucci (1/4, HR) socked a two-run homer while Luis Hernandez (3/5, 2B) and Yangervis Solarte (2/5, 2B) both doubled. Solarte extended his hitting streak to an Express franchise record 20 games.

Round Rock faced Angels prospect and University of Oklahoma product Garrett Richards to start the game. The righty permitted four runs on five hits in two innings.

Express starter Greg Reynolds (4.12 ERA/.290 BAA) worked 5.1 innings, giving up four runs––three earned––on 10 hits and two walks. The former first-round pick has fanned just 10 (with eight walks) in 43.2 innings. He's faced 64 consecutive batters over his last three starts without recording a punchout.

Veteran reliever Aaron Heilman (3.31 ERA/.211 BAA) retired all five batters he faced in 1.2 perfect innings––striking out two––making him easily Round Rock's most effective hurler of the night.

Mark Hamburger (9.43 ERA/.391 BAA) threw only 12 of his 27 pitches for a strike and coughed up four runs in one-plus innings. He allowed three hits and walked three.

Hamburger permitted two doubles and a walk in the ninth (without getting an out) before Scheppers came on.

The 25-year-old's rough start to the 2012 campaign continued on Wednesday. In 21 innings, he has yielded 22 runs on 36 hits while walking 12 and striking out 15. In addition to the poor results, Hamburger's velocity has also been down for much of the season.

Player of the Game: RF Joey Butler
4 2 3 1 1 5 0 1 .309

AA: Frisco – OFF
21-11, 3.0 GU

The entire Texas League was off on Wednesday. The first-place Frisco RoughRiders travel to Corpus Christi for a four-game series, beginning on Thursday night.

A+: Myrtle Beach – Carolina – PPD (Rain)
15-15, 3.5 GB

The Pelicans and Mudcats were washed out due to rain on Wednesday evening. The game will be made up as part of a doubleheader on Thursday at Myrtle Beach's TicketReturn.com Field.

A: Hickory – OFF
18-12, 4.5 GB

The Sally League was dark on Wednesday. After Tuesday's rainout, Hickory got two days off before starting a four-game home set against Savannah on Thursday.

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