Robinson continues power surge for Express

Rangers No. 23 prospect goes 4-for-5, slugs two more homers

Drew Robinson has more RBIs in his last 11 games (19) than in his first 38 contests this season (11). (Bobby Stevens/MiLB.com)

By Michael Avallone / MiLB.com | June 11, 2017 11:59 PM

Drew Robinson did all he could in what was ultimately a tough loss for Triple-A Round Rock, but the Rangers' No. 23 prospect has remained red-hot since returning from his first trip to The Show.

Robinson matched his career high with four hits and continued his power surge by blasting two homers and driving in three runs, but the Express' ninth-inning rally went for naught in Oklahoma City's 10-7 walk-off win on Sunday night at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.


Gameday box score


Will Middlebrooks turned Round Rock's 4-3 deficit into a 7-4 lead with a two-out grand slam in the top of the ninth. Oklahoma City tied it in the bottom half, then walked off on Kyle Farmer's three-run homer. The clubs combined for 10 runs in the ninth after totaling seven through the first eight frames.

Robinson was responsible for all of Round Rock's offense until Middlebrooks' fireworks. The 25-year-old smacked his third leadoff homer of the week, taking Dodgers starter Brock Stewart over the left-center field fence. He popped out in the third, singled to center in the fifth and tied the game with a two-run shot to left-center in the seventh.

Robinson singled to right and scored on Middlebrooks' second slam of the season. It was his seventh career four-hit game and his first since June 26, 2015 with Double-A Frisco.

Video: Round Rock's Robinson belts second homer

"Honestly, I've just been squaring up balls more often. It's not like I really feel all that different at the plate," Robinson said. "I'm putting the barrel on the ball more consistently, trusting my approach and letting things happen."

Robinson batted .244 with one homer and 11 RBIs in 38 games before earning a promotion to the Majors on May 28. He made his big league debut and went hitless in two at-bats before returning to Triple-A, where he's hitting .400 with eight homers and 19 RBIs in his last 11 contests. The hot streak has brought his slash line up to .295/.406/.565.

"Going back throughout my career, [hitting with runners in scoring position] has always been a strong point," the Las Vegas native said. "Even when I may not have hit as well overall in my earlier years, I think I did a good job producing RBIs and scoring runs. That's something that I take pride in and I'm happy that things have worked out well in that respect the last few weeks."

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Robinson's power also continues to emerge, even from the leadoff position. The 200-pound left-handed bat slugged 25 homers across 443 games in his first four seasons but has gone deep 50 times in 307 contests since 2015. 

"Not much to it, really. I think it's maturing physically more than anything," the 2010 fourth-round pick said. "I was tall but really skinny coming out of high school. As I've gone through my career, I put on weight and it's helped, especially when I connect well."

Dodgers No. 3 prospect Willie Calhoun singled and tied it, 7-7, in the ninth with a two-run double, giving him 10 RBIs in his last four games. After a groundout and an intentional walk, Farmer, the Dodgers' 30th-ranked prospect, launched his third roundtripper of the season over the left-field fence to give Oklahoma City the win.

Michael Avallone is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @MavalloneMiLB. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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