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It’s the Final Game of 2016!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Monday, September 5, 2016 · Game #140 · Home Game #70

Frederick Keys (67-72/31-38) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (54-83/27-41)

  LHP Trevor Belicek (3-5, 6.67) vs. LHP Matt Tenuta (7-10, 5.26)

                                                                                                                                                              

PEHL HOMER GIVES BLUE ROCKS SERIES: Robert Pehl broke an eighth inning tie with a three-run homer, as the Wilmington Blue Rocks defeated the Frederick Keys 5-3 on Sunday night at Nymeo Field. Armed with a myriad of chances throughout the game, the Keys went 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position. The loss was the Keys fifth in-a-row. With one out in the eighth, Elier Hernandez singled and moved to second on a wild pitch by Garrett Cleavinger. Austin Bailey was intentionally walked and Mike Zouzalik was brought in from the bullpen to face Pehl. Without a home run all year, the Rocks first baseman slugged the second pitch over the leftfield wall. On Monday, the Keys try and avoid being swept for the first time since August 1-3 (Myrtle Beach won three straight).

ON A SLIDE: Since the Keys topped the Potomac Nationals 17-10 on Tuesday, the orange and black have lost five straight. With a loss on Monday, the team would equal its longest slide of the year. Previously, the Keys lost six in-a-row from July 29-August 4. A major culprit during the slide has been struggles with runners in scoring position. Over the five contests, the Keys have hit .156 (8-for-57) with men closest to home and have left 42 on base.

KEYS AMONG THE BEST IN THE O’S SYSTEM: With the Keys regular season coming to a close on Labor Day, several players find themselves atop the O’s organizational leaderboard in a variety of a categories. Although 91 of his 121 games came with Low-A Delmarva, Yermin Mercedes leads all Orioles minor leaguers with a .343 average while Aderlin Rodriguez sits four with a .304 mark. One of the best run producers on the O’s farm this year, Rodriguez leads all minor leaguers with 26 home runs and 92 RBIs. He has six more home runs than the next-closest players and 17 more RBIs. Conor Bierfeldt is tied for second in longballs (with Norfolk’s Trey Mancini) and Mercedes is third with 19. Mercedes is also second with 75 RBIs. On the basepaths, Jay Gonzalez has run away with the stolen base crown, racking up 43 this year (13 more than second-place Cedric Mullins of Delmarva).

MERCEDES CONTINUES TEAR: Yermin Mercedes has put together an outstanding offensive season. The 23-year-old has multiple hits in three of his last four games and has gone 10-for-21 with three doubles, an RBI and five runs scored during the homestand. That has moved his average up to .311 with the orange and black, quite a recovery for Mercedes after he started his Keys tenure 0-for-15. On Wednesday, Mercedes was named to the South Atlantic League postseason all-star team.

A-ROD REWRITING THE RECORD BOOKS: Aderlin Rodriguez has etched his name into the Keys all-time record books this season. On Thursday, he hit his 26th home run, pulling him into a tie for second-most in a single-season in Keys history.  Previously, Brandon Waring (2009) and Mario Delgado (2005) hit 26 longballs, while only Stanton Cameron (1992) who hit 29 in 1992 has more. On Saturday, Rodriguez recorded his 92nd RBI in the fifth inning, to pull into a tie for third-most by a Key in a single-season (along with Cameron). Individually, the 26 home runs and 92 RBIs are both career-highs for Rodriguez, whose previously hit 24 deep flies and drove in 83 back in 2012 (while splitting time between Low-A Savannah and Advanced-A St. Lucie).

STEWART SELECTED FOR ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE: On Wednesday, DJ Stewart was selected to play in the Arizona Fall League. Considered a “finishing school” for some of the game’s top prospects, nearly 60% of all AFL players make a Major League roster (according the AFL’s website). Over 120 games between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva this year, the former ACC Player of the Year is hitting .249 with 10 home runs and 55 RBIs. Other former Keys heading to the AFL include Tanner Scott, Jimmy Yacabonis, Austin Wynns and Adrian Marin. This group will play for the Peoria Javelinas

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 16-18 (after going 14-21 in the first half). Sad to say goodbye to road play, the Keys ended the year 37-33 away from home. It marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

GAMBOA GETS CALL TO THE MAJORS: On Friday night, former Keys pitcher, Eddie Gamboa made his MLB debut with the Tampa Bay Rays. Pitching 0.1 of an inning, the righty allowed a run on a hit, walked two and struck out one. Gamboa is the 151st former Key to reach the Major Leagues and the seventh this year, joining Parker Bridwell, Donnie Hart, Steven Brault, Ariel Miranda, Ty Kelly and Ashur Tolliver. A conventional pitcher at first, Gamboa converted to a knuckleball pitcher in 2013. With the Rays, Gamboa became the second-oldest player in franchise history (31 years, 256 days) to make his big league debut. Only Jim Morris (35 years old) the inspiration for the movie The Rookie was older.

SCOUTING THE BLUE ROCKS: The Keys conclude their season with four games against Wilmington. Head-to-head, the season-set is tied 11-11 (after the Keys were 9-3 against the Rocks in the first half). Wilmington has taken eight of the last nine meetings. Individually, Aderlin Rodriguez has hit five home runs driven in 20 (.286 BA). Jay Gonzalez has hit .310 in 12 contests with six doubles, seven RBIs and 10 steals.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Matt Tenuta makes his 26th appearance and 22nd start of the year on Monday. His most recent outing came last Wednesday at Carolina. Tagged with the loss, he allowed three runs on eight hits in six innings. Tenuta comes off a strong August where he went 3-2 with a 3.60 ERA. Last season, Tenuta spent time with Low-A Lexington, Rookie-Burlington and the AZL Royals. Between the three stops he went 3-7 with a 3.93 ERA, with 13 of his 21 appearances coming at Low-A (2-6, 4.25). Opening the season there, the 10th pitch of his fifth start cost him more than two months, as he took a line drive off his left leg which broke his fibula. Selected by the Royals out of high school in the 25th round of the 2012 draft, Tenuta received a reported $100,000 bonus.

Keys Try to Snap a Four-Game Slide Sunday

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Sunday, September 4, 2016 · Game #139 · Home Game #69

Frederick Keys (67-71/31-37) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (53-83/26-41)

  RHP David Richardson (4-6, 4.20) vs. RHP Corey Ray (8-6, 4.36)

                                                                                                                                                              

BLUE ROCKS HAVE FINAL WORD: Carlos Diaz delivered the go-ahead RBI single in the eighth inning to lead the Wilmington Blue Rocks to a 4-3 win over the Frederick Keys on Saturday night at Nymeo Field. It was the Keys seventh setback in their last eight games to the Blue Rocks. DJ Stewart tied the game in the seventh with a solo homer off Brennan Henry, but the Blue Rocks answered in the eighth. Mike Hill opened with a double off Ivan Hernandez and got to third on a base hit by Austin Bailey. A John Brontsema flyball to center was not deep enough for Hill to tag, but Diaz came through one batter later. Frederick put the tying and winning runs on base in the ninth, but Luis Rico struck out Aderlin Rodriguez and got Conor Bierfeldt to ground out to end the game.

ON A SLIDE: Since the Keys topped the Potomac Nationals 17-10 on Tuesday, the orange and black have lost four straight. It is the team’s longest drought since a season-worst six-game slide from July 29-August 4. A major culprit during the slide has been struggles with runners in scoring position. Over the four contests, the Keys have hit .156 (7-for-45) with men closest to home and have left 35 on base.

WRAPPING UP AUGUST: The Keys finished August with a 14-16 record as the team concluded the month with losses in three of its last four games. Offensively, the team hit .272, Frederick’s best showing in any month this year. The third-highest average in the league, the Keys also finished with 27 home runs in 30 games. Only Lynchburg (28) hit more. On the mound the Keys posted a 4.64 ERA while the bullpen finished with a 5.11 mark. Some of this could be due to overuse, as Keys bullpen hands worked 118 innings (most of any month) following a July where they pitched 115 frames. Among active players, Steve Wilkerson led the way with a .306 average and drove in 12 runs, his most productive month of the year. On the mound, Ryan Meisinger posted a 2.08 ERA.

MERCEDES CONTINUES TEAR: Yermin Mercedes has put together an outstanding offensive season. Owner of three straight multi-hit games, the 23-year-old has gone 9-for-17 with three doubles, an RBI and four runs scored. Quite a recovery for Mercedes after he started his Keys tenure 0-for-15. Currently Mercedes leads all Orioles minor leaguers with a .344 batting average, 26 points higher than former Key Chance Sisco, who is playing for Triple-A Norfolk. Additionally, he ranks second among O’s farmhands in RBIs (75) and is fourth in homers (19). On Wednesday, Mercedes was named to the South Atlantic League postseason all-star team.

A-ROD REWRITING THE RECORD BOOKS: Aderlin Rodriguez has etched his name into the Keys all-time record books this season. On Thursday, he hit his 26th home run, pulling him into a tie for second-most in a single-season in Keys history.  Previously, Brandon Waring (2009) and Mario Delgado (2005) hit 26 longballs, while only Stanton Cameron (1992) who hit 29 in 1992 has more. On Saturday, Rodriguez recorded his 92nd RBI in the fifth inning, to pull into a tie for third-most by a Key in a single-season (along with Cameron). Individually, the 26 home runs and 92 RBIs are both career-highs for Rodriguez, whose previously hit 24 deep flies and drove in 83 back in 2012 (while splitting time between Low-A Savannah and Advanced-A St. Lucie).

STEWART SELECTED FOR ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE: On Wednesday, DJ Stewart was selected to play in the Arizona Fall League. Considered a “finishing school” for some of the game’s top prospects, nearly 60% of all AFL players make a Major League roster (according the AFL’s website). Over 115 games between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva this year, the former ACC Player of the Year is hitting .250 with 10 home runs and 55 RBIs. Other former Keys heading to the AFL include Tanner Scott, Jimmy Yacabonis, Austin Wynns and Adrian Marin. This group will play for the Peoria Javelinas.

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 16-17 (after going 14-21 in the first half). This includes series wins in two of the last four sets. Still, Frederick is sad to say goodbye to road play. Ending the year 37-33 away from home, it marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

GAMBOA GETS CALL TO THE MAJORS: On Friday night, former Keys pitcher, Eddie Gamboa made his MLB debut with the Tampa Bay Rays. Pitching 0.1 of an inning, the righty allowed a run on a hit, walked two and struck out one. Gamboa is the 151st former Key to reach the Major Leagues and the seventh this year, joining Parker Bridwell, Donnie Hart, Steven Brault, Ariel Miranda, Ty Kelly and Ashur Tolliver. A conventional pitcher at first, Gamboa converted to a knuckleball pitcher in 2013. With the Rays, Gamboa became the second-oldest player in franchise history (31 years, 256 days) to make his big league debut. Only Jim Morris (35 years old) the inspiration for the movie The Rookie was older.

SCOUTING THE BLUE ROCKS: The Keys conclude their season with four games against Wilmington. Head-to-head, the orange and black lead the season-set 11-10, though the Rocks have taken seven of the last eight meetings. Individually, Aderlin Rodriguez has hit five home runs driven in 20 (.288 BA). Jay Gonzalez has hit .308 in 12 contests with six doubles, seven RBIs and nine steals. On the Blue Rocks side, Anderson Miller has hit .318 (7-22) with a homer, a double, a triple and three RBIs.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Corey Ray makes his 27th overall start this year and his 19th with the Blue Rocks on Sunday. His most recent outing came on Tuesday at Carolina. Pitching 6.2 innings, the righty got the win, allowing one run on two hits. He walked one and struck out eight. Ray has given up two runs or fewer in each of his last four starts. Called up to Wilmington in May, the 23-year-old went 2-1 with a 3.92 ERA in eight starts with the Low-A Lexington Legends. He returned there after going 5-7 with a 6.06 ERA in his first year as a pro. Selected in the fifth round of the 2014 draft by the Royals, Ray played at Texas A&M and went 6-1 with a 1.91 ERA as a junior.

Keys Play Game #138!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Saturday, September 3, 2016 · Game #138 · Home Game #68

Frederick Keys (67-70/31-36) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (51-84/24-42)

  LHP Mitch Horacek (5-11, 4.59) vs. RHP Derek Gordon (2-2, 4.63)

                                                                                                                                                              

BLUE ROCKS TAKE OPENER: The Wilmington Blue Rocks scored four times in the fourth inning to defeat the Frederick Keys 5-3 on Friday night at Nymeo Field. Armed with a variety of chances to regain control, the orange and black went 2-for-15 with runners in scoring position and left nine on base. Lucas Long racked up seven strikeouts over the first three innings, but Wilmington turned the tables in the fourth. Mike Hill doubled to open the frame, while a walk and an error loaded the bases. Two batters later, Robert Pehl doubled in a pair while a sac-fly and a wild pitch made it 4-1. Wilmington added one more run in the seventh on an RBI single by Elier Hernandez. The Keys brought the tying run to bat in the ninth following back-to-back doubles by Steve Wilkerson and Josh Hart, but Aderlin Rodriguez popped out to end the game.

NEXT BEST THING?: With an 11-5 loss to the Potomac Nationals on Wednesday, the Keys were eliminated from playoff contention for the fifth straight year. Frederick’s last playoff appearance came in 2011, when the club finished 80-59 and won the Mills Cup Championship under Orlando Gomez. Following a setback to the Blue Rocks last night, the Keys next goal is a .500 season. To accomplish that, the Keys must win the final three games of their series with the Blue Crew.

WRAPPING UP AUGUST: The Keys finished August with a 14-16 record as the team concluded the month with losses in three of its last four games. Offensively, the team hit .272, Frederick’s best showing in any month this year. The third-highest average in the league, the Keys also finished with 27 home runs in 30 games. Only Lynchburg (28) hit more. On the mound the Keys posted a 4.64 ERA while the bullpen finished with a 5.11 mark. Some of this could be due to overuse, as Keys bullpen hands worked 118 innings (most of any month) following a July where they pitched 115 frames. Among active players, Steve Wilkerson led the way with a .306 average and drove in 12 runs, his most productive month of the year. On the mound, Ryan Meisinger posted a 2.08 ERA.

MERCEDES CONTINUES TEAR: Yermin Mercedes has put together an outstanding offensive season. Following a 3-for-4 game on Thursday, the Keys catcher went 2-for-4 with a run scored on Friday to raise his average with the Keys to .305 (the first time he has been over .300). Quite a recovery for Mercedes after he started his Keys tenure 0-for-15. Currently Mercedes leads all Orioles minor leaguers with a .343 batting average, 23 points higher than former Key Chance Sisco, who is playing for Triple-A Norfolk. Additionally, he ranks second among O’s farmhands in RBIs (75) and is fourth in homers (19). On Wednesday, Mercedes was named to the South Atlantic League postseason all-star team.

A-ROD REWRITING THE RECORD BOOKS: Aderlin Rodriguez has etched his name into the Keys all-time record books this season. On Thursday, he hit his 26th home run, pulling him into a tie for second-most in a single-season in Keys history.  Previously, Brandon Waring (2009) and Mario Delgado (2005) hit 26 longballs, while only Stanton Cameron (1992) who hit 29 in 1992 has more. Rodriguez also has 91 RBIs, the fourth-highest single season total, while he would pull into a tie for third (with Cameron) with one more.  Individually, the 26 home runs and 91 RBIs are both career-highs for Rodriguez, whose previously hit 24 deep flies and drove in 83 back in 2012 (while splitting time between Low-A Savannah and Advanced-A St. Lucie).

STEWART SELECTED FOR ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE: On Wednesday, DJ Stewart was selected to play in the Arizona Fall League. Considered a “finishing school” for some of the game’s top prospects, nearly 60% of all AFL players make a Major League roster (according the AFL’s website). Over 115 games between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva this year, the former ACC Player of the Year is hitting .247 with eight home runs and 53 RBIs. Other former Keys heading to the AFL include Tanner Scott, Jimmy Yacabonis, Austin Wynns and Adrian Marin. This group will play for the Peoria Javelinas.

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 16-16 (after going 14-21 in the first half). This includes series wins in two of the last four sets. Still, Frederick is sad to say goodbye to road play. Ending the year 37-33 away from home, it marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 113 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 128). Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (104) and has given up 16 more than the next-closest teams.

SCOUTING THE BLUE ROCKS: The Keys conclude their season with four games against Wilmington. Head-to-head, the orange and black lead the season-set 11-9, though the Rocks have taken six of the last seven meetings. Individually, Aderlin Rodriguez has hit five home runs drive in 19 RBI (.280 BA). Jay Gonzalez has hit .308 in 12 contests with six doubles, seven RBIs and nine steals. On the Blue Rocks side, Anderson Miller has hit .333 (6-18) with a homer, a double, a triple and two RBIs. Luis Villegas has hit..304 (7-23) with a triple, a double and four RBIs in seven games.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Derek Gordon makes his 34th appearance and his sixth start with the Blue Rocks on Saturday. The right-hander’s most recent outing came last Saturday against Myrtle Beach at Frawley Stadium. Making his second straight start, the right-hander allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits in 4.1 innings. He walked one and struck out four. In his prior start against Carolina, he pitched four shutout innings in a no-decision. As a starting pitcher, Gordon is 0-1 with a 3.00 ERA (opponents are hitting 271) as opposed to a 5.17 mark as a reliever where he is 2-1 with seven saves. No stranger to starting, all 13 of the 25-year-old’s appearances last year came as a starter. Going 2-3 with a 3.47 ERA he was the Chukars Pitcher of the Year. The brother of Royals outfielder Alex Gordon, Derek was signed by the Royals as a free agent in February 2015. Before signing with the Royals, Gordon played for the Kansas City T-Bones, an independent team in the American Association.

It’s West Wing Night!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Friday, September 2, 2016 · Game #137 · Home Game #67

Frederick Keys (67-69/31-35) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (51-83/24-41)

  RHP Lucas Long (7-6, 4.37) vs. LHP Foster Griffin (4-10, 6.48)

                                                                                                                                                              

WHITING GUIDES NATIONALS TO WIN IN FINALE: The Potomac Nationals got a strong effort from Boone Whiting to defeat the Frederick Keys 3-1 on Thursday night at Nymeo Field. It was Frederick’s fourth setback in the last five games. Potomac broke a scoreless game in the fourth on a two-run double by Stephen Drew who was playing on an MLB rehab assignment. Aderlin Rodriguez countered with a solo homer to move the Keys within a run in the home fourth but the P-Nats answered right back in the fifth. Following a Raudy Read triple, Osvaldo Abreu singled his teammate in. Whiting picked his 11th win with the Nationals delivering 6.1 innings of one-run baseball.

NEXT BEST THING?: With an 11-5 loss to the Potomac Nationals on Wednesday, the Keys were eliminated from playoff contention for the fifth straight year. Frederick’s last playoff appearance came in 2011, when the club finished 80-59 and won the Mills Cup Championship under Orlando Gomez. Although a playoff berth is no longer in the cards, a winning season is still attainable. For that to become reality, the Keys must sweep this four-game series with Wilmington. On the bright side, the Keys have won as many as seven in-a-row against the Blue Rocks this year (May 2-17).

WRAPPING UP AUGUST: The Keys finished August with a 14-16 record as the team concluded the month with losses in three of its last four games. Offensively, the team hit .272, Frederick’s best showing in any month this year. The third-highest average in the league, the Keys also finished with 27 home runs in 30 games. Only Lynchburg (28) hit more. On the mound the Keys posted a 4.64 ERA while the bullpen finished with a 5.11 mark. Some of this could be due to overuse, as Keys bullpen hands worked 118 innings (most of any month) following a July where they pitched 115 frames. Among active players, Steve Wilkerson led the way with a .306 average and drove in 12 runs, his most productive month of the year. On the mound, Ryan Meisinger posted a 2.08 ERA.

MERCEDES CONTINUES TEAR: Yermin Mercedes has put together an outstanding offensive season. Going 3-for-4 with two doubles on Thursday, the Keys catcher raised his average with the Keys to .297, the highest it has been since his promotion to Frederick on August 1. Currently Mercedes leads all Orioles minor leaguers with a .341 batting average, 21 points higher than former Key Chance Sisco, who is playing for Triple-A Norfolk. Additionally, he ranks second among O’s farmhands in RBIs (75) and is fourth in homers (19). On Wednesday, Mercedes was named to the South Atlantic League postseason all-star team.

 A-ROD REWRITING THE RECORD BOOKS: Aderlin Rodriguez continued his assault on the Keys single-season record books on Thursday. Hitting his 26th home run, Rodriguez moved two past his previous career-high (set in 2012). Meanwhile he added his 91st RBI, giving him eight more than his previous high (also set in 2012). The 26 home runs now tie Rodriguez for second in a single-season along with Brandon Waring (2009) and Mario Delgado (2005). The all-time mark belongs to Stanton Cameron (1992) who hit 29 deep flies in 1992 (despite hitting .247). On the RBI side, Rodriguez sits fourth, and is one shy of tying Cameron for third.

STEWART SELECTED FOR ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE: On Wednesday, DJ Stewart was selected to play in the Arizona Fall League. Considered a “finishing school” for some of the game’s top prospects, nearly 60% of all AFL players make a Major League roster (according the AFL’s website). Over 115 games between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva this year, the former ACC Player of the Year is hitting .247 with eight home runs and 53 RBIs. Other former Keys heading to the AFL include Tanner Scott, Jimmy Yacabonis, Austin Wynns and Adrian Marin. This group will play for the Peoria Javelinas

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 16-15 (after going 14-21 in the first half). This includes series wins in two of the last four sets. Still, Frederick is sad to say goodbye to road play. Ending the year 37-33 away from home, it marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 113 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 128). Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (104) and has given up 16 more than the next-closest teams.

SCOUTING THE BLUE ROCKS: The Keys conclude their season with four games against Wilmington. Head-to-head, the orange and black lead the season-set 11-8, though the Rocks have taken five of the last six meetings. Individually, Aderlin Rodriguez has led the way, hitting .300 with five home runs and 19 RBIs. Jay Gonzalez has hit .308 in 12 contests with six doubles, seven RBIs and nine steals. On the Blue Rocks side, Anderson Miller has hit .385 (5-13) with a homer, a double, a triple and two RBIs.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Left-hander Foster Griffin makes his 19th start with the Blue Rocks on Friday. The southpaw’s most recent outing came last Sunday against Wilmington. Throwing four innings, he gave up seven runs (four earned) on 10 hits and took the loss. Following consecutive quality starts, Griffin has surrendered 12 runs (eight earned) on 20 hits in 7.1 innings to raise his ERA by 30 points. Against Frederick, the Floridian is 1-1 with a 2.76 ERA (16.1 IP/5ER/14 SO/.254 BAA). Griffin joined the Blue Rocks on May 17, after beginning the year with Low-A Lexington. Overall with the Legends, he went 1-4 with a 3.38 ERA. Griffin spent all of last year at Low-A and went 4-6 with a 5.44 ERA in 22 starts. He struggled mightily in the first half (7.64 ERA) before producing a better in the second-half (4.39 ERA). Drafted by the Royals in the first round of the 2014 draft, Griffin was selected out of First Academy High School in Orlando, FL (their nickname is Royals). He was compensation, for the Braves signing Ervin Santana (after Kansas City made a qualifying offer). Griffin’s dad, Fred is Director of the Grand Cypress Academy of Golf. He has worked with Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman

One More With the Nationals…

Good Afternoon Keys Fans,

The Keys close out their three-game series with the Potomac Nationals on Thursday night at 7 p.m. Following an 11-5 setback, the orange and black were eliminated from playoff contention on Wednesday.

Still a winning season could be in the cards. After all, the Keys have won each of their last three sets against Potomac and own an 11-8 head-to-head record against Wilmington.

There are a ton of fun promotions coming up at Nymeo Field this weekend. Tomorrow, Bradley Whitford (aka Josh Lyman) will be in town for West Wing Night. Keyote will also be launching his own presidential campaign bid, so help support him! He’ll worry about the Electoral College later.

Saturday is Art in the Park with while Sunday features a pre-game Guns and Hoses Softball game and Monday is Fan Appreciation Day.

For more details about this weekend’s promotions, click here, while check out Keyote’s campaign video below!

We’ll have the broadcast tonight at 7:00 p.m on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com and the TuneIn Radio App (search for WTHU).

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Thursday, September 1, 2016 · Game #136 · Home Game #66

Frederick Keys (67-68/31-34) vs. Potomac Nationals (71-62/36-29)

  RHP Jon Keller (0-2, 3.18) vs. RHP Boone Whiting (10-3, 3.58)

                                                                                                                                                              

KEYS KNOCKED OUT OF PLAYOFF RACE: The Potomac Nationals utilized five RBIs from Bryan Mejia and a four-run seventh to defeat the Frederick Keys 11-5 on Wednesday night at Nymeo Field. With the loss, the Keys have been eliminated from playoff contention. In the seventh, Potomac batted around against Austin Urban and Ivan Hernandez. After a sacrifice bunt moved two into scoring position, Urban intentionally walked Drew Vettleson to set up a potential double play. Hernandez was called on and allowed a sac-fly to Bryan Mejia followed by an RBI single to Matt Page. Two batters later, Dale Carey grounded a ball to first that went past Aderlin Rodriguez to score two more. Four of Frederick’s five runs scored in the fifth, thanks to a passed ball, an RBI double by Jay Gonzalez and a two-run single by Rodriguez.

NEXT BEST THING?: For the fifth straight year, the Keys will not be in the Carolina League playoffs, as the Potomac Nationals clinched a playoff berth with a win last night. Frederick’s last playoff appearance came in 2011, when the club finished 80-59 and won the Mills Cup Championship under Orlando Gomez. Although a playoff berth is no longer in the cards, a winning season is still attainable. The Keys enter Thursday’s action with a 67-68 record. Helping matters, after the Keys complete their series with Potomac, the orange and black play four against Wilmington, a team Frederick is 11-8 against this year. The Blue Rocks hold the second-worst overall record (51-83) in the CL.

WRAPPING UP AUGUST: The Keys finished August with a 14-16 record as the team concluded the month with losses in three of its last four games. Offensively, the team hit .272, Frederick’s best showing in any month this year. The third-highest average in the league, the Keys also finished with 27 home runs in 30 games. Only Lynchburg (28) hit more. On the mound the Keys posted a 4.64 ERA while the bullpen finished with a 5.11 mark. Some of this could be due to overuse, as Keys bullpen hands worked 118 innings (most of any month) following a July where they pitched 115 frames. Among active players, Steve Wilkerson led the way with a .306 average and drove in 12 runs, his most productive month of the year. On the mound, Ryan Meisinger posted a 2.08 ERA.

GONZALEZ ENJOYS STRONG NIGHT: Jay Gonzalez tied his season-high with three hits on Thursday, going 3-for-3 with a double, an RBI, a run scored and two stolen bases. It was the Floridian’s first multi-hit game since August 6 when he was playing for Double-A Bowie, while it was his first multi-steal effort since June 7. His sixth inning steal on Wednesday got him to 40 on the year, six more than his previous career-high of 34 he set last year (between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva). Gonzalez has 12 more swipes than the next-closest Orioles farmhand. Nearly half (17) of those came in May.

A-ROD GOES DEEP AGAIN: Aderlin Rodriguez has hit four home runs in his last eight games. His most recent was a solo blast in the seventh on Tuesday. That was the Dominican’s 25th home run of the year, establishing a new career-high. Previously, he hit 24 in 2012 between St. Lucie and Savannah (Mets). Rodriguez also has a new career-high in RBIs (90) after he tallied 83 during the 2012 season. Owner of 25 multi-RBI games this year, the two by Rodriguez last night moved him into a tie for fourth in a single season in franchise history (Alex Ochoa-1993 and Brandon Waring-2009 also had 90).

MAKING A PUSH FOR THE RECORD BOOKS?: Currently, Aderlin Rodriguez is second in the CL in home runs, trailing Lynchburg’s Bobby Bradley by four. With only five games left in the season, the 24-year-old is fourth all-time in Keys history in home runs for a single-season. With one more he would pull into a tie for second with Mario Delgado (2005) and Brandon Waring (2009). The Keys all-time home run leader for a single-season is Stanton Cameron, who hit 29 in 1992.

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 16-14 (after going 14-21 in the first half). This includes series wins in two of the last three sets. Still, Frederick is sad to say goodbye to road play. Ending the year 37-33 away from home, it marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

STEWART SELECTED FOR ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE: On Wednesday, DJ Stewart was selected to play in the Arizona Fall League. Considered a “finishing school” for some of the game’s top prospects, nearly 60% of all AFL players make a Major League roster (according the AFL’s website). Over 115 games between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva this year, the former ACC Player of the Year is hitting .247 with eight home runs and 53 RBIs. Other former Keys heading to the AFL include Tanner Scott, Jimmy Yacabonis, Austin Wynns and Adrian Marin. This group will play for the Peoria Javelinas.

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 112 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 128) Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (104) and has given up 15 more than the next-closest team. Potomac ranks fifth in the CL in homers (86) and have 16 in 23 games against the Keys. Eight of those have come from Raudy Read and David Masters (each have four apiece) to lead the club.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Boone Whiting makes his 23rd start of the season on Thursday and his fifth against the Keys. Splitting time between Double-A Harrisburg and Potomac, Whiting is a combined 10-6 with a 4.02 ERA. The right-hander’s most recent outing came last Friday at Lynchburg. Picking up the win, he allowed one run on six hits in 6.1 innings. He walked one and struck out two. Against the Keys, Whiting is 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA in four starts and has given up just four earned run in 24 innings. The Keys are hitting .174 against him. Signed by Washington as a free agent on January 12 of this year, Whiting spent all of 2015 at Triple-A, first suiting up for Memphis (Cardinals) and then for Albuquerque (Rockies). Between the two stops as he went 4-9 with a 6.44 ERA. Walks were a major issue as he handed out 61 in 95 innings. He has walked just 27 in 113.2 innings between his pair of stops this year. He was originally drafted by St. Louis in the 18th round of the 2010 draft. The righty features a fastball, slider, and changeup.

Still Alive!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 · Game #135 · Home Game #65

Frederick Keys (67-67/31-33) vs. Potomac Nationals (70-62/36-28)

  LHP Trevor Belicek (3-5, 6.84) vs. RHP J.D. Martin (0-2, 6.00)

                                                                                                                                                              

AN OFFENSIVE NIGHT TO REMEMBER: The Frederick Keys set offensive standards all across the board on Tuesday night in a 17-10 victory over the Potomac Nationals at Nymeo Field. In the process, the Keys avoided elimination from playoff contention. Following a grand slam by Osvaldo Abreu that put the Nationals ahead 9-6, the orange and black scored 11 of the game’s final 12 runs. Josh Hart capped off a three-run seventh with an RBI triple to tie the contest, before the home team scored eight times and sent 13 to bat in the eighth. All eight runs came with two outs and were unearned due to a throwing error by third baseman Kelvin Gutierrez. After that miscue put men at the corners, Frederick tallied six consecutive RBIs off Neil Holland. The Keys also added eight hits in the stanza to put the game out of reach.

ATTACK OF THE BATS: In Tuesday’s game, the Keys established new season-highs for runs (17), runs in an inning (eight), hits (22) and hits in an inning (eight). The 22 hits were two shy of a franchise record (set on August 8, 1990 v Lynchburg) while the eight-run inning was the Keys biggest since June 30, 2014. Occurring in the first inning that day, the Keys were playing at…Potomac.    Additionally, the orange and black tied a season-high for extra-base hits (seven) and went 11-for-20 with runners in scoring position, following a four-game series at Salem where the team was a collective 6-for-35 with men closest to home (.171). This included no hits with men at second or third in the last two games (0-for-11).

MORE ABOUT OFFENSE: In Tuesday’s game, every member of the Keys starting lineup recorded at least one hit, RBI and scored once. Eight of the team’s starting nine posted multiple hits, five tallied two or more RBIs and four registered or more RBIs. Steve Wilkerson led the way, going 4-for-5 with a double, five RBIs and four runs scored. The four hits and five RBIs tied career-highs. Josh Hart also enjoyed a strong night, ending 4-for-5 with two RBIs and a run scored.

STAYING ALIVE: With the win over Potomac last night, the Keys remain in playoff contention. Nonetheless, the team’s elimination number remains two, meaning any loss to the Nationals will result in elimination. Frederick leads the season set 13-9, has won four of the last five games and has taken each of the last three sets against Potomac. However, the orange and black have not swept Potomac this year.

A-ROD GOES DEEP AGAIN: Aderlin Rodriguez hit his fourth home run in his last seven games in the series opener. A solo blast to center in the seventh, it was the Dominican’s 25th home run and his sixth this month. The 25 home runs are a new career-high for Rodriguez, who previously hit 24 in 2012 between St. Lucie and Savannah (Mets). Rodriguez also has a new career-high in RBIs (88) after he tallied 83 during the 2012 season.

MAKING A PUSH FOR THE RECORD BOOKS?: Currently, Aderlin Rodriguez is second in the CL in home runs, trailing Lynchburg’s Bobby Bradley by four. With only six games left in the season, the 24-year-old is fourth all-time in Keys history in home runs in a single-season. With one more he would pull into a tie for second with Mario Delgado (2005) and Brandon Waring (2009). The Keys all-time home run leader for a single-season is Stanton Cameron, who hit 29 in 1992. On the RBI side, Rodriguez is sixth all-time with 88.

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 16-13 (after going 14-21 in the first half). This includes series wins in two of the last three sets. Still, Frederick is sad to say goodbye to road play. Ending the year 37-33 away from home, it marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

STEWART SELECTED FOR ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE: Earlier today, DJ Stewart was selected to play in the Arizona Fall League. Considered a “finishing school” for some of the game’s top prospects, nearly 60% of all AFL players make a Major League roster (according the AFL’s website). Over 115 games between Frederick and Low-A Delmarva this year, the former ACC Player of the Year is hitting .247 with eight home runs and 53 RBIs. Other former Keys heading to the AFL include Tanner Scott, Jimmy Yacabonis, Austin Wynns and Adrian Marin. This group will play for the Peoria Javelinas.

PLAYING FOR A WINNING SEASON: Although the Keys come into Wednesday with an elimination number of two, a winning season is certainly a possibility. Frederick has not finished with an overall record above .500 since 2011, when the team went a Carolina League-best 80-59 en route to a Mills Cup title. Currently, the Keys are 67-67, but they finish with Potomac and Wilmington, teams that the Keys are a collective 24-17 against.

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 111 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 128) Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (103) and has given up 15 more than the next-closest team. Potomac ranks fifth in the CL in homers (85) and have 15 in 22 games against the Keys. Eight of those have come from Raudy Read and David Masters (each have four apiece) to lead the club.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: J.D. Martin makes his fourth start with the Nationals on Wednesday. This will be his eighth overall appearance of the year, after he started the season with the GCL Nationals and the Low-A Hagerstown Suns. His most recent outing came last Thursday against the Salem Red Sox. Tagged with the loss, he allowed six runs (five earned) on 10 hits in seven innings. His other two starts have come against the Keys (11 IP/7R/7H). Starting his career as a conventional pitcher with the Cleveland Indians organization (he was a first round pick in 2001-35th overall) Martin got to the Majors with Washington in 2009 and part of 2010. He has since converted to a knuckleballer and throws the pitch 85% of the time according to a recent MASN article. He started throwing the pitch as a kid and got better while alongside now Red Sox knuckleballer Steve Wright.  This is the first time the 33-year-old has pitched in the Carolina League since 2006 when he was playing for Kinston.

Do or Die…

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

The Keys return home for their final seven games of the regular season. It begins with a three-game set against the Potomac Nationals. A must-win game, the Keys will be eliminated from playoff contention with a loss in any game to the P-Nats. On Sunday, the club’s elimination number dropped by a game after Salem’s Jordan Procyshen came up with a walk-off double against Ryan Meisinger.

In addition to one last chance to see your Keys, there are a ton of fun promotions scheduled for this upcoming weekend. This includes West Wing Night with Bradley Whitford (he played Josh Lyman on the show), Art in the Park (with special jerseys), our annual Guns and Hoses Softball game (pitting Frederick the Frederick Fire and Police Departments) and Fan Appreciation Day with lots of great prizes.

For a full list of promotions during the last homestand, click here.

Tonight’s broadcast can be heard on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com or the TuneIn radio App (by searching WTHU). We’ll hit the air at 6:45.

Today’s notes are below.

Shake your Keys!

Geoff

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Tuesday, August 30, 2016 · Game #134 · Home Game #64

Frederick Keys (66-67/30-33) vs. Potomac Nationals (70-61/36-27)

  RHP David Richardson (4-6, 4.11) vs. RHP Austen Williams (4-5, 4.32)

                                                                                                                                                             

PROCYSHEN GIVES RED SOX WALK-OFF WIN: Jordan Procyshen hit a two-out, walk-off double in the ninth inning to give the Salem Red Sox a 1-0 victory over the Frederick Keys on Sunday night at Nymeo Field. With the loss, the Keys elimination number moves to two. In the ninth, Nick Longhi reached on a fielder’s choice with one out and was replaced by pinch runner Bryan Hudson. He moved to second on an infield single, before Ryan Meisinger struck out Jose Sermo. Needing one more out to force extra innings, Meisinger elevated his 1-0 pitch to Procyshen who hit it over the head of Conor Bierfeldt. It was the Keys 10th shutout loss of the season. Mitch Horacek received a no-decision despite delivering 6.2 shutout innings.

ON THE BRINK: The Keys enter Tuesday’s series on the verge of being eliminated from playoff contention, following losses in three of four games to the Salem Red Sox. In contrast, the Potomac Nationals enter tonight after winning two of three against Lynchburg. Nearly a three-game P-Nats sweep, the Nationals were denied all three games, after a three-run, walk-off homer by Connor Marabell with two outs and Lynchburg in a 7-5 hole. If the Keys should lose any of their three games to the Nationals, the orange and black will be knocked out of the playoff race. Frederick leads the season-set 12-9, has won three of the last four games and has won each of the last three series against Potomac. However, the Keys have not swept the Nationals in a set this year.

BACK HOME FOR THE REST OF THE WAY: The Keys will be at home for the duration of the regular season. During this time, the Keys play three against Potomac and four against Wilmington. In second-half home games, the Keys are 15-13 (after going 14-21 in the first half). This includes series wins in two of the last three sets. Still, Frederick is sad to say goodbye to road play. Ending the year 37-33 away from home, it marks the most road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping).

LITTLE HELP!: Over the four-game series at Salem, the Keys combined to leave 36 men on base (11 Friday, eight in each doubleheader game and nine Sunday). Over the last two games, the Keys did not have a hit with a runner in scoring position (0-for-11), while for the series, the Keys hit .171 (6-for-35) with men closest to home. For the year, the Keys are hitting .252 with runners in scoring position (fifth CL).

RODRIGUEZ NAMED POSTSEASON ALL-STAR: Aderlin Rodriguez was named a Carolina League postseason all-star on Saturday, the Keys only 2016 representative. A year full of honors for the 24-year-old, the Keys first baseman has also been named a midseason all-star, has twice been named the Orioles Minor League Player of the Month and was recognized as the Carolina League Player of the Month for July. In 122 games, Rodriguez is batting .303 with 24 homers, 86 RBIs, 22 doubles, six triples and 65 runs scored. He paces the CL in total bases (246) and slugging (.532), is second in homers, third in hits (140), third in batting average and fourth in RBIs. Lynchburg’s Bobby Bradley was named MVP while Trevor Clifton of Myrtle Beach was pitcher of the year.

WYNNS WRAPS UP HIT STREAK: Austin Wynns went 0-for-3 with a walk on Sunday to snap his hitting streak at 13 games. He came one game away from tying a career-high (he hit in 14 straight from June 29-July 21 with Low-A Delmarva). Over the 13-game streak, Wynns hit .420 (21-for-50) with a homer, five doubles, six RBIs and nine runs scored. It came one game short of tying the Keys longest hit streak of the year (a 14-gamer by Erick Salcedo from May 15-29).

PLAYING FOR A WINNING SEASON: Although the Keys come into Tuesday with an elimination number of two, a winning season is certainly a possibility. Frederick has not finished with an overall record above .500 since 2011, when the team went a Carolina League-best 80-59 en route to a Mills Cup title. Currently, the Keys are 66-67, but they finish with Potomac and Wilmington, teams that the Keys are a collective 23-17 against. Moreover, Keys manager Keith Bodie goes for his fourth straight winning season as a manager (he has not had a losing campaign since 2005 when he went 64-78 at Double-A Harrisburg).

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 109 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 128) Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (102) and has given up 15 more than the next-closest team. Potomac ranks fifth in the CL in homers (84) and have 14 in 21 games against the Keys. Eight of those have come from Raudy Read and David Masters (each have four apiece) to lead the club.

ODDS AND ENDS: Yermin Mercedes has hit safely in his last seven contests and is hitting .304 (8-for-27). Wynston Sawyer is tied for third in on-base percentage among full-season minor leaguers (.422). Former Heisman Trophy winner, Tim Tebow hit five BP home runs and ran a 6.7 second 60 yard Dash in a workout attended by 27 MLB clubs. According to Yahoo Sports, Tebow has been offered a contract to play for Aguilas de Zulia a five-time champion of the Venezuelan League and two-time Caribbean Series winner. It is also the same winter team Erick Salcedo has played on the last two years.  Salcedo is hitless in his last 16 at-bats.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Austen Williams makes his 15th start with the PNats and his 25th overall. His most recent outing came last Wednesday against Salem. Tagged with the loss, the righty allowed six runs on eight hits in seven innings. The Texan opened the year at Double-A Harrisburg and 1-7 with a 5.68 ERA (10 starts) before being sent down on June 9. He spent last year with three different levels in the Nationals system, mostly with Low-A Hagerstown and the P-Nats, with one start at Triple-A Syracuse. Between the stops, he was 12-8 with a 2.58 ERA in 25 starts. Selected by Washington in the sixth round of the 2014 draft out Texas State, Williams was a college teammate of former Keys pitcher Donnie Hart. Drafted after his junior year, he went 8-3 with a 3.65 ERA for the Bobcats as the team’s Friday starter.

Final Road Game of the Year!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Sunday, August 28, 2016 · Game #133 · Road Game #70

Frederick Keys (66-66/30-32) vs. Salem Red Sox (82-49/39-23)

      LHP Mitch Horacek (5-11, 4.85) vs. LHP Daniel McGrath (7-6, 4.42)

KEYS AND RED SOX SPLIT DOUBLEHEADER: The Frederick Keys utilized a four-run seventh to defeat the Salem Red Sox in game one of Saturday’s doubleheader 6-4, before Salem bounced back with a 3-1 victory in the nightcap. With the split and a Potomac win, the Keys elimination number is down to three with eight to play. In game one, the Keys used an error and an RBI single by Steve Wilkerson to grab a quick 2-0 lead in the fourth, before Salem got back-to-back doubles from Jayce Ray and Jordan Procyshen to make it a one-run affair. Frederick then scored four times in the seventh. After a passed ball, Yermin Mercedes singled in two, while Jomar Reyes followed with a two-run homer. Garrett Cortright closed the door, but not without a fight, as the Red Sox plated three in the seventh. In game two, the Keys were limited to an Aderlin Rodriguez home run, while Salem scored three times in the second. Red Sox pitching was wild, walking eight in seven frames, but the Keys left eight aboard and did not have a hit after the third.

LITTLE HELP!: Over the three-game series, the Keys have combined to leave 27 men on base (11 Friday, eight in game one, eight in game two Saturday). That includes a 6-for-30 mark with runners in scoring position. For the year, the Keys are hitting .253 with runners in scoring position.

ON THE BRINK: The Keys elimination number dropped from four to three following an 8-6 Potomac win over Lynchburg. Any combination of Keys losses and Potomac wins would continue to shrink that figure. Things do not get easier on Sunday, as the Keys face left-hander Daniel McGrath, who has scored three of his seven wins against the Keys and has a 2.18 ERA against the orange and black (the Keys are batting .211 against him). Salem also possesses the best home record in the CL (44-22) and just lost an 11-game home winning streak (tied franchise record) with a Keys win in game one.

ONE LAST ROAD GAME: On Sunday the orange and black conclude their road slate. This season, the Keys have 37-32 away from the friendly confines as opposed to 29-34 at Nymeo Field. It is the most number of road wins that the Keys have had since at least 2005 (when Minor League Baseball began more stringent record keeping). Frederick has the fourth-best road record in the Carolina League and is one of only two teams (Lynchburg is the other) that has more victories on the road than at home. After winning two of their three previous through road sets coming into Salem, the Keys will try for a split against the Sox.

RODRIGUEZ NAMED POSTSEASON ALL-STAR: Aderlin Rodriguez was named a Carolina League postseason all-star on Sunday, the Keys only 2016 representative. A year full of honors for the 24-year-old, the Keys first baseman has also been named a midseason all-star, has twice been named the Orioles Minor League Player of the Month and was recognized as the Carolina League Player of the Month for July. In 122 games, Rodriguez is batting .305 with 24 homers, 86 RBIs, 22 doubles, six triples and 65 runs scored. He paces the CL in total bases (246) and slugging (.536), is second in hits (140), home runs, is third in batting average and fourth in RBIs. Lynchburg’s Bobby Bradley was named MVP while Trevor Clifton of Myrtle Beach was pitcher of the year.

 ALL I DO IS WYNN, WYNN, WYNN: Austin Wynns singled in the fourth inning in game one Saturday to extend his hitting streak to a season-best 13 games. That figure is one game shy of a career-best for Wynns (he hit in 14 straight from June 29-July 21 with Low-A Delmarva). Over his current run, the former Fresno State product is batting .420 (21-for-50) with a homer, five doubles, six RBIs and nine runs scored. In the process, he has moved his batting average from .267 to .308. The Keys longest hit streak of the year is a 14-gamer by Erick Salcedo from May 15-29.

TROUBLE WITH THE LEATHER: Over the last 32 games, the orange and black have made multiple errors 10 times and have committed 41 overall during that stretch. Currently, the Keys rank sixth in fielding percentage (.972) and have made the third-most errors in the circuit. Only Wilmington (143) and Carolina (139) have made more.

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 109 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 127) Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (102) and has given up 15 more than the next-closest team. This weekend, the Keys are at pitcher-friendly confines of LewisGale Field, a ballpark where the Keys have hit only four homers in nine games (though the team did have two yesterday). It is also a yard where the Red Sox have managed just 16 home runs in 66 games (Salem is a distant last in home runs this year with 48).

ODDS AND ENDS: Aderlin Rodriguez is riding a five-game hitting streak where he is batting .412(7-for-17) with three homers and five RBIs. Yermin Mercedes has hit safely in his last six contests and is hitting .304 (7-for-23). He also has hits in nine of his last 10.  Wynston Sawyer saw his nine-game walk streak end on Saturday in game two (11BB/9G) though his .421 on-base percentage is still tied for third among full-season minor leaguers. Steve Wilkerson (15th round) and Jay Gonzalez (27th round) were both originally drafted by the Red Sox in 2010 though neither signed. Wilkerson is hitting .353 in 20 games against the Sox, only. Head-to-head, the Red Sox lead the Keys 12-8 and have won four of the last five.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Daniel McGrath makes his 18th start of the year on Sunday. His most recent outing came on Tuesday at Potomac. Pitching three innings, he gave up seven runs (six earned) on three hits and five walks to receive the loss. He last saw the Keys on July 22 and tossed six shutout innings to get the win. A member of the Red Sox rotation last year, McGrath was limited to 17 starts due to nearly two months on the disabled list (May 14-July 10). At the time he got hurt, McGrath had a 1.80 ERA and was limiting opponents to a .119 average. With Salem, he went 4-6 with a 3.84 ERA and pitched 84.1 innings. Originally from Austrailia, McGrath was signed by Boston as a minor league free agent in February 2012. Signed as a 17-year-old, McGrath received offers from 15 MLB teams, but chose the Red Sox since he used to watch games at Fenway Park with his American-born mother, Dale. Despite signing in 2012, the lefty did not debut until the following season so he could finish high school.

Let’s Play Two!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Saturday, August 27, 2016 · Game #131/#132 · Road Game #68/#69

Frederick Keys (65-65/29-31) vs. Salem Red Sox (81-48/38-22)

      G1: RHP Lucas Long (6-6, 4.47) vs. RHP Anyelo Leclerc (3-2, 4.95)

                                                                                                                                                              

KEYS 15 HITS NOT ENOUGH: The Frederick Keys posted 15 hits but left 11 on base and made three errors in a 7-4 loss to the Salem Red Sox on Friday night at LewisGale Field. With the setback and a Nationals victory over Lynchburg, the Keys drop to 5.5 games behind the Nationals with 10 left to play. Salem went ahead in the fourth on a Jon Keller wild pitch and added an additional run in the sixth before tallying four in the seventh. Rafael Devers doubled in the first run, moved to third on a throwing error and scored on a Nick Longhi single. Trevor Belicek then got a flyout and a pickoff to clear the bases but a walk and a single put two on with two out. A wily steal attempt by Jayce Ray paid off and got Jose Sermo to second, while David Sopilka drove home both men with a base hit. The Keys scored the last three runs.

TOUGH PILL TO SWALLOW: In spite of equaling their season-high of 15 hits (fifth time) Frederick could not come back from a four-run Salem seventh. A team known for its extra base pop, the Keys surprisingly had only one extra-base hit, a Conor Bierfeldt double in the ninth (the team’s second-to-last hit of the game). Despite an abundance of chances, the Keys left 11 on base (though Salem did not do much better keeping nine aboard). Frederick fared much better with runners in scoring position on Thursday, going 7-for-12. In spite of Friday’s result, the Keys are 29 for their last 75 at the plate (.375).

REYES ENJOYS BIG NIGHT: Jomar Reyes tied his career-high with four hits on Friday, ending 4-for-4 with a runs scored. It was his first four-hit effort since last May 19 against Lakewood (when Reyes was with the Delmarva Shorebirds). The 19-year-old has a single in five straight at-bats, following a 10-game stretch where he was 3-for-35.

 ALL I DO IS WYNN, WYNN, WYNN: Reyes was not the only one to reach four hits. Austin Wynns also posted a four-hit effort, going 4-for-5 with an RBI an two runs scored. That tied a season-best for the California native (he went 4-for-5 on June 19 with Double-A Bowie). His night started with a single in the second that extended his season-best hitting streak to 12 games. That figure is two games shy of a career-best for Wynns (he hit in 14 straight from June 29-July 21 with Low-A Delmarva). Over his current run, the former Fresno State product is batting .435 (20-for-46) with a homer, five doubles, six RBIs and eight runs scored. In the process, he has moved his batting average from .267 to .309. The Keys longest hit streak of the year is a 14-gamer by Erick Salcedo from May 15-29.

ELIMINATION NUMBER DROPS: Adding insult to injury, Friday’s loss coupled with a 4-1 Potomac win over Lynchburg, Frederick’s elimination number dropped from seven to five. Any combination of Keys losses and Potomac wins would continue to shrink that figure. Making matters worse, the Keys are facing a Red Sox team that has won 13 of its last 14 games and has captured 11 straight home wins (matching a franchise record). Overall Salem has the CL’s top home record at 43-21.

LET’S PLAY TWO: The Keys play their fourth doubleheader of the month on Saturday and their ninth this year. In twinbills, the Keys are 1-3-4 (one win, one loss, four splits) giving them a 6-10 overall record (third-worst in the league). Meanwhile the Red Sox are 10-6 in doubleheaders, the third-best figure in the CL. Frederick has split its last two doubleheaders (both with Lynchburg) but do not have a twinbill sweep since June 11 at Potomac (when Frederick earned 2-0 and 3-0 wins).

 TROUBLE WITH THE LEATHER: Over the last 30 games, the orange and black have made multiple errors 10 times an have committed 40 overall during that stretch. Currently, the Keys rank sixth in fielding percentage (.971) but have made the second-most errors in the circuit (only Wilmington has more with 141).

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 107 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 126) Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (102) and has given up 16 more than the next-closest teams. This weekend, the Keys are at pitcher-friendly confines of LewisGale Field, a ballpark where the Keys have hit only two homers in seven games (Josh Hart and Aderlin Rodriguez). It is also a yard where the Red Sox have managed just 16 home runs in 64 games (Salem is a distant last in home runs this year with 48).

WALK THIS WAY: Wynston Sawyer has made pitchers work this year and is currently third in the Carolina League with 63 walks. However of all the players in the top five, Sawyer is the only one who has walked more times than he has struck out (63 walks to 54 strikeouts). The San Diego native has received a free ride in nine straight games and has 11 in his last eight contests). This represents Sawyer’s longest walk streak of the year, as previously he earned a free ticket in five straight from May 7-13. The 63 walks is a career-high for the Keys catcher (whose previous career-best was 42 in 2013). Moreover, it has contributed to a .426 on-base percentage, the third-highest in full-season minor league baseball (his previous best was .336 in 2013).

ODDS AND ENDS: On Saturday, Aderlin Rodriguez was named to the Carolina League postseason all-star team. Entering Saturday’s action, the Keys first baseman is tops in slugging (.530) and total bases (241), second in homers (23) and hits (138), third in hitting (.304) and fourth in RBIs (85). Bobby Bradley (Lynchburg) was named league MVP and Trevor Clifton (Myrtle Beach) earned pitcher of the year. Seven of the Keys nine starters had one hit on Friday and four had multi-hit games. On the other hand four also had multi-strikeout games. Steve Wilkerson (15th round) and Jay Gonzalez (27th round) were both originally drafted by the Red Sox in 2010 though neither signed. Wilkerson is hitting .371 in 18 games against the Sox, only Austin Wynns (.450) has done better, though Wilkerson has played in 13 more games against Salem. Head-to-head, the Red Sox lead the Keys 11-7 and have won the last three.

 TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER (GAME 1): Right-hander Anyelo Leclerc makes his 13th appearance and his eighth start against the Keys. His most recent outing came last Sunday at Winston-Salem. Tossing five innings, he surrendered one run on three hits to pick up the win. He walked one and struck out five. Against Frederick, Leclerc is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA (8 IP/2R/6H) and is holding Frederick hitters to a .207 average against. A SAL South All-Star selection, Leclerc went 3-1 with eight saves (eight tries) and a 1.77 ERA in 21 games. Logging 40.2 innings, he allowed eight earned runs, walked 12 and struck out 42 while opponents batted .174 against him. No stranger to Advanced-A, Leclerc spent most of 2015 with Advanced-A High Desert (Rangers). In 29 relief outings, he was 3-3 with a 5.52 ERA, he also made one relief appearance at Double-A Frisco. Originally signed by the Rangers in July 2010, Leclerc was selected by Boston in the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 draft on December 10.

It’s Off to Salem!

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

The Keys head to Salem for their final roadtrip of 2016! The Keys arrive at LewisGale Field 4.5 games back of the second place Potomac Nationals. Potomac’s magic number is seven, meaning the orange and black will need a strong final showing before Potomac comes to Frederick on Tuesday night.

On Thursday, the Keys scored seven times in the eighth inning to win 12-7 it what was one of the (if not the most) exciting inning of the year. The seven run frame equaled a season-high while Josh Hart landed the decisive blow with a two-run double.

Tonight, Jon Keller gets the ball for the Keys and will match up against Salem southpaw Trey Ball. First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m and we’ll have all the action on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com and the TuneIn Radio App.

Today’s notes are below.

Chat soon and shake your keys!

Geoff

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Friday, August 26, 2016 · Game #130 · Road Game #67

Frederick Keys (65-64/29-30) vs. Salem Red Sox (80-48/37-22)

      RHP Jon Keller (0-1, 2.89) vs. LHP Trey Ball (7-5, 3.86)

                                                                                                                                                              

MONSTER EIGHTH GIVES KEYS SERIES: The Frederick Keys scored seven times in the eighth inning to eliminate a two-run deficit and defeat the Winston-Salem Dash 12-7 on Thursday night at Nymeo Field. With the victory and a Potomac loss, the Keys move within 4.5 games of the Nationals with 11 games remaining. In the eighth, Frederick sent 11 men to bat to equal their most productive inning of the year. Following a leadoff walk, Aderlin Rodriguez doubled off Brandon Quintero to put runners at second and third. Quintero bounced back with a strikeout, before Austin Wynns made it a one-run game with a sac-fly. Taylore Cherry was then summoned from the bullpen and would struggle mightily. After walking DJ Stewart, Jomar Reyes singled up the middle to tie the game. Two batters later, Josh Hart put the Keys ahead for good with a double down the left field line. Frederick added three more insurance runs before Tanner Chleborad closed the door in the ninth.

A DO OR DIE INNING: The eighth inning was one of the best of the year for the Keys. Thursday marked the second time this season where the orange and black had scored seven times (the other came on July 5 at Lynchburg). Even more impressive, six of those runs scored with two outs, while before the inning started, Dash pitching had sent down nine straight and 14 of 15. Individually, Jomar Reyes and Josh Hart each came through in clutch spots. For Reyes, the single was just his fourth hit in his last 39 at-bats and his second RBI in his last 11 games. As for Hart, it was the second time in the last six days he had collected a game-winning hit (his other was a two-run double in the eighth last Saturday at Potomac).

NO GROUND LOST: Thanks to Thursday’s eighth inning and a Potomac loss to Salem (7-4) the Keys elimination number remains at seven with 11 games left to play. Any combination of Keys losses and Potomac wins would continue to shrink that figure. The Keys face a stiff challenge this weekend, as they face a Salem team that has won 12 of its last 13, recently completed a Red Sox-era record 10-game winning streak and has already established a Sox-era record for most wins in a season (80). Fortunately, Potomac heads to Lynchburg, a team that has taken three straight and seven of 10. If the Keys can put together a productive series, Frederick and Potomac will play three more times (Potomac’s last trip is slated for August 30-September 1).  

CAN SERVE IT, BUT CAN TAKE IT TOO: Frederick and Winston-Salem played longball for the first four innings last night with the two sides combining to hit five. This included a grand slam and back-to-back homers by both teams. Although the Keys rank second in the CL with 107 deep flies (Lynchburg leads the way with 125) Frederick is also first in home runs allowed (102) and has given up 16 more than the next-closest team. Tonight, the Keys head to the pitcher-friendly confines of LewisGale Field, a ballpark where the Keys have hit only two homers in six games (Josh Hart and Aderlin Rodriguez) but is also a yard where the Red Sox have managed just 16 home runs in 63 games (Salem is a distant last in home runs this year with 48).

ALL I DO IS WYNN, WYNN, WYNN: Austin Wynns extended his season-best hitting streak to 11 games on Thursday with a first inning double. That figure is three games shy of a career-best for the Californian (he hit in 14 straight from June 29-July 21 with Low-A Delmarva). Over his current run, the former Fresno State product is batting .395 (16-for-41) with a homer, five doubles, five RBIs and six runs scored. In the process, he has moved his batting average from .267 to .295. The Keys longest hit streak of the year is a 14-gamer by Erick Salcedo from May 15-29.

WALK THIS WAY: Wynston Sawyer has made pitchers work this year and is currently third in the Carolina League with 63 walks. However of all the players in the top five, Sawyer is the only one who has walked more times than he has struck out (63 walks to 54 strikeouts). The San Diego native has received a free ride in nine straight games and has 11 in his last eight contests). This represents Sawyer’s longest walk streak of the year, as previously he earned a free ticket in five straight from May 7-13. The 63 walks is a career-high for the Keys catcher (whose previous career-best was 42 in 2013). Moreover, it has contributed to a .426 on-base percentage, the third-highest in full-season minor league baseball (his previous best was .336 in 2013).

 A-ROD TURNING IT UP: Since a six-game stretch where he was 0-for-17 at the plate, Aderlin Rodriguez has gotten back on track, collecting hits in nine of his last 11 games. During that time he is batting .381 (16-for-42) with four home runs, 11 RBIs and nine runs scored. Rodriguez has four multi-hit and four multi-RBI games over those 11 contests (and has a home run and a pair of RBIs in his last two games). Last night, Rodriguez set a new career-high for RBIs (85) surpassing the 83 he had in 2012 while his 23 home runs are one short of a career-best (also set in 2012).

ODDS AND ENDS: Erick Salcedo has a multi-hit game in five of his last eight contests. Head-to-Head, the Red Sox lead the Keys 11-7 this year. The two sides split a four-game series from July 21-24 at Nymeo Field. Salem has won the last two at LewisGale Field. On Monday, Minor League Baseball announced the Carolina League will grow to 10 teams for the 2017 season, with Kinston set to bring a team back and Fayetteville, NC a likely second location.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Ball makes his 22nd start of the season on Friday and his fourth against the Keys. He is rated the No. 17 prospect in the Red Sox system according to Baseball America. His most recent outing came last Saturday at Winston-Salem. The winner, Ball gave up two runs on six hits in six innings. Ball is fifth with a 3.86 ERA but is third in walks (64). He has a 3.13 ERA in four starts this month after posting an 8.17 ERA in July. Against the Keys he is 1-0 with a 3.94 ERA. Spending all off 2015 with the Red Sox, the southpaw went 9-13 with a 4.73 ERA in 25 games. He ended third in the league in walks and second in home runs allowed (16) and losses (13). Last year Ball made five starts against Frederick, more than any Red Sox pitcher. He went 0-5 with a 5.40 ERA. A 2013 first round selection (seventh overall) out of New Castle Chrysler (IN) High School (Boston’s highest draft pick since 1993), Ball was named the Gatorade Indiana Baseball Player of the Year as a senior.

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