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Scheppers continues rise in Rangers' pen

4/23/2013

Rangers manager Ron Washington said this week that roles still haven't been defined in the club's bullpen.

Well, right-hander Tanner Scheppers has one. He's the Rangers seventh- and eighth-inning stopper.

Scheppers was at again Monday night as the Rangers rallied for a 7-6 victory over the Los Angeles Angels. The right-hander entered Monday's game in Anaheim after the Rangers had scored three runs in the top of the seventh to tie the score and retired six out of seven Angels hitters.

It was the second time this season Scheppers pitched two shutout innings in relief. He hasn't allowed a run in 10 2/3 innings. The four times he's allowed a runner into scoring position, he's gotten an out.

Scheppers has been especially good against right-handed hitters, who have just three hits against him in 26 at-bats. He has six strikeouts, including a seventh-inning punchout Monday night in which he fanned Angels slugger Albert Pujols on three pitches.

Scheppers has been able to bear down when he puts runners on base. He's allowed one hit in 10 at-bats with runners on. After allowing a two-out single to Josh Hamilton in the bottom of the seventh, Scheppers got Howie Kendrick to line out to Ian Kinsler.

It was one of two shutdown innings the Rangers needed to set up A.J. Pierzynski's game-winning home run in the top of the ninth.