Joey Butler continues to go to work despite the spotlight often being aimed at teammates. The 2012 Most Valuable Player for the Round Rock Express is at it again this season, hitting safely in 10 of his last 12 games.
He rapped a double in the fifth inning of Round Rock’s 5-2 loss to Albuquerque on Saturday night at the Dell Diamond.
The 27-year-old hit .292 with 20 home runs, 78 RBIs and an on-base percentage of .392 last season. Some of those numbers are picking up this season, as he is hitting at a .317 clip with a .420 on-base percentage.
“I’m just trying to hit line drives and help the team win here in Round Rock,” Butler said. “The goal is to keep getting more wins than we had last year. I’m not too big on the personal goals. Any way I can help the team win.”
The Mississippi native moved to Fort Worth during the winter for his offseason workouts.
“We have a good group of hitters this year with talented prospects and veteran hitters, which makes us a complete lineup,” Butler said.
The right fielder has played in all 23 games this season; he was used as designated hitter on Saturday.
Ahead 1-0 after the first inning, Albuquerque brought nine batters to the plate in the fourth and got four home to break the game open.
Express starter Richard Bleier was charged the loss. He was chased after 3 2/3 innings after allowing five runs — four earned — on 10 hits.
Chris McGuiness drilled his team-high fourth homer in the fifth inning for the Express.
Round Rock squandered a late rally, mustering only a run despite having the bases loaded with no outs in the eighth.
Third base prospect Mike Olt sat out his second straight game; he is hitting just .123.
Round Rock will look to even the series with a win in the finale at 1:05 p.m. Sunday. Albuquerque won 10-5 Thursday, and the Express took a 4-3 decision Friday.
After Sunday’s game, the Express will hit the road for a four-game series at Iowa. Round Rock will host a series against Nashville starting Friday.