Ben Paulsen lined the 96-mph fastball into left-center field for a single, driving home the winning run and giving the Rockies an 8-7 victory over the Rangers on Monday night at Coors Field.
The Rangers trailed, 7-0, after two innings before fighting their way back, finally tying the game in the ninth inning on a two-out RBI double by Adrian Beltre. But Scheppers, who had escaped a bases loaded jam in the eighth, couldn't keep it tied.
"Battling our way back from seven runs down, our guys continued to gut it out and perform," manager Jeff Banister said. "Yeah, that was a tough one to lose."
The inning started with Troy Tulowitzki reaching on a broken-bat single to center and Carlos Gonzalez blooping one that also fell into shallow center. With the Rangers' outfield playing deep for the Rockies power hitters, there was no chance to catch either one.
"It's frustrating, but they are hits," Scheppers said. "I have to execute better."
The pivotal play in the top of the ninth came after a leadoff walk by Leonys Martin. Delino DeShields followed with a weak grounder toward the right-side hole. Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu fielded it, looked at second and decided to go to first. Umpire Tom Hallion ruled safe, but the Rockies challenged and the call was overturned.
"That's one that we've seen stand a number of times," Banister said. "That was a big one. That might have been a difference maker."
The Rangers were still able to tie it on Beltre's two-out double. But if they had taken the lead, closer Shawn Tolleson would have been on the mound in the bottom of the ninth.
Rangers starter Nick Martinez put the Rangers in the early hole, allowing seven runs in the first two innings. Eight of the first 12 batters he faced reached, on seven hits and a one walk. The Rockies collectively hit for the cycle off Martinez, as Nolan Arenado had a two-run double in the first, LeMahieu had an RBI triple in the second and Tulowitzki had a two-run home run to go with the Rockies' four singles.
"It's tough, I thought I made some good pitches in the first two innings," Martinez said. "The home run and the triple, those were bad pitches. But other guys got on with some seeing-eye ground balls. I just ran into some bad luck, and [made] some bad pitches."
Tulowitzki's home run was the last hit by the Rockies on the night against any Rangers pitcher until the ninth. Martinez left after four, having retired eight of the last 10 batters faced. The bullpen combination of Anthony Bass, Spencer Patton, Sam Freeman and Scheppers pitched four scoreless innings to give the Rangers a chance for a stirring comeback.
Then came the ninth, and the Rangers are now 1-3 since the All-Star break.