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In front of family, 'Petey' hits key home run

Robinson launches two-run blast in victory over Angels
Special to MLB.com

ANAHEIM -- Drew Robinson (aka "Petey" for Players Weekend) delivered in a big way for the second consecutive game, belting a 431-foot, two-run homer (per Statcast™) in the third inning of the Rangers' 3-0 victory over the Angels on Thursday at Angel Stadium.

While Robinson's RBI single in the 10th inning to pad the lead in Wednesday's win was surely a fine moment, the rookie's fourth home run of the year had a special meaning.

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ANAHEIM -- Drew Robinson (aka "Petey" for Players Weekend) delivered in a big way for the second consecutive game, belting a 431-foot, two-run homer (per Statcast™) in the third inning of the Rangers' 3-0 victory over the Angels on Thursday at Angel Stadium.

While Robinson's RBI single in the 10th inning to pad the lead in Wednesday's win was surely a fine moment, the rookie's fourth home run of the year had a special meaning.

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Robinson was born in Las Vegas, but most of his family resides in Southern California. And many of them were in attendance to watch his homer off Angels starter Troy Scribner that sailed well into the right-center-field seats.

Robinson's father and sister, who still live in Las Vegas, made the drive to watch the series finale.

"It was cool to experience that in front of them," Robinson said. "I'm sure they had a good time with it, too."

Video: TEX@LAA: Robinson discusses his key homer in 3-0 win

Robinson's homer, which followed a double from Brett Nicholas, was the only support Rangers starter Martin Perez and the bullpen needed, as the team recorded its sixth shutout of the season. It also moved above .500 for the first time since June 27.

"Big home run in that situation," manager Jeff Banister said. "He had a big hit for us last night, too. He had the hometown crowd, being in front of his family -- special night for him."

Mike Napoli provided the rest of the scoring with a solo home run in the fourth. The Rangers lead the Majors with 200 home runs, two more than the Astros. They also pulled within one game of the Twins for the second American League Wild Card spot.

Video: TEX@LAA: Napoli skies a solo homer to center in 4th

"We told ourselves we haven't played our best baseball yet with the people we have here," Robinson said. "It seems like it's starting to click, and the games are a lot more fun."

Robinson's role with the team continues to change. With Joey Gallo on the seven-day concussion disabled list, Robinson appeared twice in left field during the four-game series and once at shortstop. He gave Adrian Beltre a day off in the field Thursday, starting at third.

Robinson has had consistent production at the plate, hitting .316 over his last 19 at-bats, while reaching safely in 14 of his first 15 Major League starts.

"I just tried to take advantage of the opportunity, and do whatever to contribute whenever my time comes," Robinson said. "I had a good routine before the game, so I think it's just staying as locked in as I possibly can in my role."

Ryan Posner is a contributor to MLB.com based in Los Angeles and covered the Rangers on Thursday.

Texas Rangers, Drew Robinson