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Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-20-14

Good afternoon Keys fans!

The team takes to the Grove again tonight against the Winston-Salem Dash for the second outing of their three-game series.

The Keys won last night’s series opener 5-3 behind the pitching of righty Branden Kline. Despite Kline’s status as one of the Keys most effective starters, he had yet to record a win at home this season. Kline, who is now 6-4 with a 3.79 ERA this season, pitched six innings, allowing one run off of five hits. He struck out four and did not record a walk.

Michael Burgess got the scoring started for the Keys in the first inning when he doubled in Glynn Davis, who singled earlier in the inning. Jason Esposito batted in Trey Mancini later in the inning to extend the Keys early lead to 2-0. Tucker Nathans hit his first home run of the year in the second inning to give the Keys a 3-0 advantage.

Frederick got three innings of relief from Matt Hobgood and Lex Rutledge. Hobgood pitched innings seven and eight, giving up two unearned runs on four Winston-Salem hits. Rutledge allowed a hit and struck out one in the ninth inning on way to being credited with the save.

Tonight’s Keys starter is RHP Sebastian Vader, who is making only his third appearance with Frederick. Winston Salem sends RHP Tony Bucciferro to the mound looking to even the series at one.

Below are the game notes for tonight’s matchup:

Sunday, July 20, 2014 · Game #96 · Home Game #45

Frederick Keys (45-50/13-15) vs Winston-Salem Dash (44-55/14-16)

RHP Sebastian Vader (1-1, 7.45) vs. RHP Tony Bucciferro (6-9, 4.33)

WE MUST PROTECT THIS HOUSE!: Branden Kline earned his first home win, tossing six innings of one-run baseball, while the Frederick Keys used some early offense to defeat the Winston-Salem Dash 5-3 on Saturday night at Harry Grove Stadium. It was the Keys third straight win, and only the club’s second victory at home in the second-half. Frederick grabbed a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first, courtesy of a double by Michael Burgess which scored Glynn Davis, and an RBI fielder’s choice by Jason Esposito. Tucker Nathans stretched the lead to a field goal in the second, homering off J.B. Wendelken on the first pitch of the at-bat. That would be all the support Kline needed, as the Frederick native allowed only a pair of two-baggers in the second and five hits on the game. The Keys plated single tallies on a passed ball and an error by shortstop Zach Voight to take a 5-1 lead after six innings, before the Dash followed with a pair of unearned runs off Matt Hobgood. However, Lex Rutledge closed the door in the ninth, to secure a series opening win.

HOMETOWN LOVE: Saturday marked the first Keys home win since July 1, when Frederick earned a 3-0 rain-shortened win against Salem. Only the club’s second win at the Grove in the second-half, the team had dropped 10 of its previous 11 home games. Despite the win last night, Frederick’s 2-10 home record remains the worst in the Carolina League in the second-half. Wilmington has the next-worse mark (3-6), but the Blue Rocks have played the fewest second-half home games. The Keys have not won back-to-back games at home since June 13-15, when the team took three straight from Myrtle Beach to close out the first-half. Overall Frederick is 18-26 in home games, the worst mark in the Carolina League. Wilmington’s 22 home victories are the next fewest. In contrast, the Keys road record is tied for the second-best in the league with Potomac (24-21), with only Myrtle Beach (33-17) faring better in road tilts.

THE STARS FINALLY ALIGN: It took nine tries, but Branden Kline finally earned his first home win on Saturday night. The righty has now earned a win in three of his last four starts, while he paces the team with six victories. Saturday’s win was also Kline’s first quality start since the All-Star break, after he allowed three runs on more in each of his four prior outings (2-2, 6.04 ERA). One of the Carolina’s League’s top innings eaters, Kline rates third in the loop in innings pitched (109.1), trailing only Carolina’s Ryan Merritt (118.1) and Winston-Salem’s Tony Bucciferro (114.1).

WINNING THE HIT WAR: Since the Keys were shutout by Potomac’s Austin Voth, Richie Mirowski and Jake Walsh last Friday, the orange and black have outhit their opponent in five of the last six games they have played. Meanwhile, in the other contest on July 16, Frederick equaled its opponents output. Over the six-game stretch, the Keys have outhit Potomac, Salem and Winston-Salem by a 61-53 margin. Although the Keys are just 3-3 during that time, in most cases, the Keys have done very well when they record more hits than their opposition. When the Keys tally more hits their record is 31-10, compared to going 6-32 when being outhit or 8-8 when both sides push. Additionally, when the Keys outhit their counterpart at home, the team’s record is 18-3.

MULTI-HIT MAN: Glynn Davis’ run of hot-hitting continued in the series opener. Going 2-for-4, with a run scored, it was Davis eighth multi-hit effort in his last 11 affairs. In the process, he has seen his batting average climb 16 points (.278 to .294). Over the 11 games, he is batting .396 (19-for-48) with two doubles, two RBIs and 11 runs scored (he has also scored a run in nine of his last 11 games). Trying to rebound after a lackluster June, Davis is batting .345 over 15 games in July after hitting only .220 in 21 tilts the month prior.

HORSES FOR COURSES: Tucker Nathans has beat up Winston-Salem this season, and Saturday night was no exception. Ending 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI, the former Fairfield star also clubbed his first home run of 2014, and his first dinger since August 4, 2013 at Myrtle Beach. This season against the Dash, Nathans is batting a team-best .372 with a home run, three doubles, six RBIs and six runs scored. Of his 17 multi-hit games, five have come against Winston-Salem.

NO RELATION TO TOM: Wynston Sawyer extended his on-base streak to 27 games on Friday night thanks to a single in the seventh inning. That is the longest active swing in the Carolina League, and rates as the second-longest overall. Salem’s Carson Blair saw his league-best 28 game jaunt come to an end on Friday. Over the 27 games, Sawyer is batting .259 with one homer, six RBIs, four doubles and 15 walks. On Thursday, Sawyer wrapped up a six-game hitting streak. During that time he hit .348 (8-for-23) with a home run, three RBIs and three runs scored.

KELLER JOINS THE KEYS: On Friday, Jon Keller was promoted to Frederick from Low-A Delmarva. He takes the roster spot of Matt Price, who was placed on the disabled list on Wednesday. In 24 relief appearances, Keller went 3-0 with a 1.59 ERA and tallied five saves in eight opportunities. Over 56.2 stanzas, he gave up just 39 hits, walked 14 and struck out 66. Rated the No. 17 prospect in the Orioles system according to Baseball America, the 21-year-old limited opponents to a .192 average, the fourth-lowest mark by a South Atlantic League reliever. Drafted by Baltimore in the 22nd round of the 2013 MLB Draft out of the University of Tampa, Keller helped lead the Spartans to the 2013 Division II College World Series.

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy struggled in his third rehab start with the Keys on Wednesday. Working four-plus innings, the Oklahoma native allowed a career-high six runs on six hits. In the process, Bundy was tagged with his first loss as a member of the Keys. Limited to 75 pitches for the duration of the season, the former fourth-overall pick has struggled in three outings with the orange and black. In 11.2 innings he has given up 12 runs (9.26 ERA) and has surrendered 15 hits and walked six. Opponents are hitting .326 against Bundy, while he has not completed five innings in any of his Advanced-A outings. Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

MOVING ON UP!: Mike Yastrzemski was promoted to Double-A Bowie after a sterling 23-game stretch with the Keys. During that time, he hit .312 with a home run, 19 RBIs, seven doubles, two triples and 21 runs scored. The grandson of Hall of Famer and former Red Sox great, Carl Yastrzemski, the former Vanderbilt Commodore becomes the second Frederick player to advance to Double-A for the first time this season. Mychal Givens was moved up to Bowie on June 21. At his best during the first week of July, Yastrzemski became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014, when he accomplished the feat on July 5 at Lynchburg. Going 5-for-6 with a homer, a triple, two doubles and five RBIs, the Massachusetts native became the first Keys player to hit for the cycle since May 2, 2005, when Jeff Fiorentino did it against Winston-Salem. In a corresponding move, Frederick received Lucas Herbst from Low-A Delmarva.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19) and Branden Kline (20). Jon Keller (17) and Trey Mancini (25) have joined the club since the All-Star break, while Mychal Givens (23) opened the season with the Keys, but was moved up to Double-A on June 21. Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Tony Bucciferro makes his 20th Carolina League start and his fourth against the Keys this season. His most recent outing came on Monday at Carolina. Tagged with his fourth straight loss, the righty allowed six runs on eight hits over 5.2 innings, while he walked a career-high three. A control wizard, Monday’s outing marked only the second time his career that Bucciferro had walked more than one in a pro game. His last three outings have been rough, as he has tallied a 9.60 ERA (15IP/16ER/30H) during that time. As a result, he is tied for the CL lead in defeats with Carolina’s Cole Sulser. When he has been on, Bucciferro has provided plenty of relief to the bullpen though, working 114.1 innings, the second-most in the circuit. If he works four innings today, he will pull into a tie with Ryan Merritt of the Mudcats for the league lead. Last season, Bucciferro split the year between Rookie-Bristol and Low-A Kannapolis, appearing in 16 combined games. A majority of that time came with the Intimidators, where he went 3-5 with a 2.50 ERA over 12 games (12 starts). Armed with laser-like command, Bucciferro struck out a combined 96 batters in 2013 and walked only six over 90.2 innings. He played his first season with Rookie-Bristol, tallying a 2.57 ERA, but only pitched in six games due to a shoulder injury. Selected by Chicago in the 14th round of the 2012 draft, Bucciferro played his college baseball at Michigan State, where he was teammates with former Keys outfielder Torsten Boss. A team captain his senior season, the 24-year-old closed out his career as the Spartans all-time leader in innings pitched (372.1) and starts (55). Twice an All-Big Ten selection, he led the conference in strikeouts as a senior. During his college career he also pitched in the Cape Cod League for the Brewster Whitecaps in 2011, and got to play at Fenway Park during the Cape Cod League All-Star game that season. Not overpowering, Bucciferro throws both a four-seam (89-91 mph) and two-seam (88-90 mph) fastball, a slider (81-84 mph) and a changeup (78-82).

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-19-14

Good afternoon Keys fans!

The team is back in Frederick this evening opening up a three game series against the Winston-Salem Dash. The Keys come in on a two-game winning streak after closing out their road series against the Salem Red Sox. The Dash and the Keys have not met since late June in a rain-delay-dominated series in which Winston-Salem swept Frederick in Harry Grove Stadium.

Dash pitcher Frank Montas, who was expected to pitch in the Futures Game, is out for the season after undergoing right knee surgery.

Branden Kline takes the mound for the Keys tonight and will face off against Dash starter J.B. Wendelken.

The Frederick Keys welcome Duck Dynasty’s own Mountain Man to Harry Grove tonight!

Come on out tonight, enjoy some baseball, meet Mountain Man, and shake your keys!

Below are the game notes for tonight’s game:

Saturday, July 19, 2014 · Game #95 · Home Game #44

Frederick Keys (44-50/12-15) vs Winston-Salem Dash (44-54/14-15)

RHP Branden Kline (5-4, 3.92) vs. RHP J.B. Wendelken (5-7, 5.02)

SALEM SWAN SONG: Parker Bridwell turned in his best road start of the season, while the Frederick bats provided just enough offense to lead the orange and black to a 4-2 win on Friday night at LewisGale Field. The win completed a series victory for the Keys, who wrapped up the road portion of the season series on a high note. Although the game started 58 minutes late due to rain, it did not effect Bridwell, who twirled seven innings of one-run baseball and scattered only four hits. Sox starter Joe Gunkel also put together a quality outing, but the Keys managed individual runs off the righty in the fourth, fifth and seventh innings. In the fourth, Frederick loaded up the bases with one out following a fielder’s choice, a single by Jason Esposito and a walk. That loaded the bases for Joel Hutter, who brought home Michael Burgess on a groundout to the left side. One inning later, Glynn Davis came home with the second run after a double, a single by Adrian Marin and a sac-fly by Tucker Nathans. Gunkel was knocked out in the seventh, following an RBI infield single by Marin to make it 3-0. Brenden Webb added a sac-fly in the eighth to complete the scoring. Bridwell pitched into the eighth, and was tagged with a run after exiting. Jesse Beal allowed three singles in the ninth, including an RBI knock by Matty Johnson, but managed to close things out to earn his third save.

BIG DADDY BRIDWELL: For the first time all season, Parker Bridwell posted a quality start on the road. Working into the eighth inning on Friday, Bridwell scattered only four hits over seven frames, in his longest start since June 9. In that outing, the Texan gave up one run over seven innings against the Red Sox. Thanks to the strong start, Bridwell picked up his first win in more than a month, to improve to 5-7 on the year. The five wins are tied for the most on the club with Branden Kline, but the seven defeats also equal the most by a Keys pitcher (Brady Wager has lost seven times as well). In spite of the strange record, Bridwell leads the team in quality starts (nine).

ADRIAN!: Adrian Marin registered his third multi-hit game in four contests on Friday. Finishing 3-for-4, the Miami native tallied his 30th RBI in the seventh via a single off Gunkel. Hitting out of the two-hole for the first time all season, the three hits tied a season-high for Marin, who had recorded three hits on five prior occasions this season. Over the last week, the 20-year-old has seen his average climb 15 points (.234 to .249) and is batting .450 (9-for-20) with a home run, a double, three RBIs and three runs scored in his last five games.

MULTI-HIT MAN: Although Marin’s recent surge has been impressive, Glynn Davis’ run of multi-hit games is even more prolonged. In his last 10 affairs, Davis has recorded two hits or more on seven occasions, while he has moved his batting average up 14 points (.278 to .292) in the process. Over the 10 games, he is batting .386 (17-for-44) with two doubles, two RBIs and 10 runs scored (he has also scored a run in eight of his last 10 games). Trying to rebound after a lackluster June, Davis is batting .333 over 14 games in July after hitting only .220 in 21 tilts the month prior.

WHERE’S THE HOME COOKIN?: Since the start of the second half, the orange and black have claimed only one win in 11 games at home. Wilmington has the next-worse home record in the second-half (3-5), but the Blue Rocks have played the fewest second-half home games in the circuit. The Keys have not won back-to-back games at home since June 13-15, when the team took three straight from Myrtle Beach to close out the first-half. Overall Frederick is 17-26 in home games, the worst mark in the Carolina League. Wilmington’s 22 home victories are the next fewest. In contrast, the Keys road record is the second-best in the league, with only Myrtle Beach (33-17) faring better in road tilts.

NO RELATION TO TOM: Wynston Sawyer extended his on-base streak to 27 games on Friday night thanks to a single in the seventh inning. That is the second-longest active swing in the Carolina League, and rates as the second-longest overall. Salem’s Carson Blair has reached in 28 straight, which is the longest streak of its kind this year (it started on May 20). Over the 27 games, Sawyer is batting .259 with one homer, six RBIs, four doubles and 15 walks. On Thursday, Sawyer wrapped up a six-game hitting streak. During that time he hit .348 (8-for-23) with a home run, three RBIs and three runs scored.

KELLER JOINS THE KEYS: On Friday, Jon Keller was promoted to Frederick from Low-A Delmarva. He takes the roster spot of Matt Price, who was placed on the disabled list on Wednesday. In 24 relief appearances, Keller went 3-0 with a 1.59 ERA and tallied five saves in eight opportunities. Over 56.2 stanzas, he gave up just 39 hits, walked 14 and struck out 66. Rated the No. 17 prospect in the Orioles system according to Baseball America, the 21-year-old limited opponents to a .192 average, the fourth-lowest mark by a South Atlantic League reliever. Drafted by Baltimore in the 22nd round of the 2013 MLB Draft out of the University of Tampa, Keller helped lead the Spartans to the 2013 Division II College World Series.

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy struggled in his third rehab start with the Keys on Wednesday. Working four-plus innings, the Oklahoma native allowed a career-high six runs on six hits. In the process, Bundy was tagged with his first loss as a member of the Keys. Limited to 75 pitches for the duration of the season, the former fourth-overall pick has struggled in three outings with the orange and black. In 11.2 innings he has given up 12 runs (9.26 ERA) and has surrendered 15 hits and walked six. Opponents are hitting .326 against Bundy, while he has not completed five innings in any of his Advanced-A outings. Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

MOVING ON UP!: Mike Yastrzemski was promoted to Double-A Bowie after a sterling 23-game stretch with the Keys. During that time, he hit .312 with a home run, 19 RBIs, seven doubles, two triples and 21 runs scored. The grandson of Hall of Famer and former Red Sox great, Carl Yastrzemski, the former Vanderbilt Commodore becomes the second Frederick player to advance to Double-A for the first time this season. Mychal Givens was moved up to Bowie on June 21. At his best during the first week of July, Yastrzemski became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014, when he accomplished the feat on July 5 at Lynchburg. Going 5-for-6 with a homer, a triple, two doubles and five RBIs, the Massachusetts native became the first Keys player to hit for the cycle since May 2, 2005, when Jeff Fiorentino did it against Winston-Salem. In a corresponding move, Frederick received Lucas Herbst from Low-A Delmarva.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19) and Branden Kline (20). Jon Keller (17) and Trey Mancini (25) have joined the club since the All-Star break, while Mychal Givens (23) opened the season with the Keys, but was moved up to Double-A on June 21. Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander J.B. Wendelken makes his 19th start of the season on Saturday and his second against Frederick in 2014. Activated from the disabled list before the game, Wendelken has not pitched since July 8, when he surrendered a season-high nine runs against Myrtle Beach on 10 hits over 3.1 innings. Although he received a no-decision, the second-half has not been kind to the righty, who has registered a 10.07 ERA (19.2 IP/22ER). In contrast, he was 5-6 with a 3.76 ERA over 14 first-half starts. In his lone outing against the Keys on May 9, the righty struck out a career-high 10 but suffered the loss giving up four runs in six innings. Just 21 years old, Wendelken made his Dash debut in 2013. Working exclusively out of the bullpen, he went 0-1 with a 4.82 ERA in six games. He also pitched three games for Low-A Kannapolis, going 0-1 with two saves and a 9.64 ERA. Originally selected by Boston in the 13th round of the 2012 Draft out of Middle Georgia College, Wendelken was named the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association Player of the Year as a member of the Knights. That season, he went 6-0 with a 0.20 ERA over 21 appearances (0.20). Keys pitcher, Matt Taylor, also pitched for Middle Georgia, but was a member of the team the year before Wendelken arrived. The righty was dealt to the White Sox last July 30 as part of the trade that sent Jake Peavy to Boston. In addition to Wendelken, the White Sox received Avisail Garcia, Francellis Montas and Cleuluis Rondon. In 40 games as a member of the Red Sox system, Wendelken went 4-0 with a 2.40 ERA. He throws a 90-93 mph fastball, a curveball (high 70s) and a changeup.

 

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-18-14

Good Evening Keys Fans!

The Keys conclude the road portion of their season-series with the Salem Red Sox tonight, when the two clubs meet at LewisGale Field at 7:05 tonight. Parker Bridwell takes the mound for the Keys and will be countered by righty Joe Gunkel, who has been roughed up in each of his two starts against the orange and black.

Doug Raftery has the call tonight starting at 6:50 p.m. on 1450 AM The Source and frederickkeys.com.

Some notes are below. Shake your keys!

Geoff

Friday, July 18, 2014 · Game #94 · Road Game #51

Frederick Keys (43-50/11-15) vs Salem Red Sox (45-49/12-14)

RHP Parker Bridwell (4-7, 4.27) vs. RHP Joe Gunkel (1-2, 3.81)’

OFF THE SCHNEID: The Frederick Keys ended a four-game losing streak on Thursday night, defeating the Salem Red Sox 5-3 at LewisGale Field. The Keys scored all five of their runs over the first three innings, while the team used outstanding relief pitching from Dennis Torres to shut the door. Glynn Davis came home with the first run in the initial frame, after a single, a stolen base, a wild pitch, and an RBI base knock by Jason Esposito. Frederick stretched its lead to 3-0 one inning later. After Wynston Sawyer earned a one-out walk, Jerome Pena doubled his teammate to third, while a fielder’s choice by Davis brought Sawyer to the plate. Tucker Nathans followed with an RBI single, while a two-run double by Brenden Webb in the third completed the Keys scoring. The Red Sox plated individual runs in the second-fourth stanzas, but would not score in their final five trips to bat. Four of those innings would come against Torres, who scattered only three hits to earn the save.

MY KINDA GUYS!: Thursday’s win was the Keys ninth against the Red Sox this season. Six of those nine triumphs have come at LewisGale Field, a venue where the orange and black have gone 6-3 this season. Additionally, the team has claimed five of the last six it has played at Salem’s Ballpark. At Harry Grove Stadium, the Keys have also done well against their commonwealth foe, earning wins of three of the four games played at the Grove. In 2014, Frederick has fared better against Salem (9-4) than any other Carolina League club.

DENNIS THE MENACE: Dennis Torres turned in another strong performance on Thursday night. Tying his career-high with four innings pitched, the Massachusetts native scattered only three hits and struck out three. Despite a rough introduction to the Carolina League where Torres allowed five earned runs over his first 6.1 innings, the former UMass standout has hit his stride in July. In 11 innings, the righty has given up just one run on nine hits to trim his ERA from 7.11 to 3.12. A pitcher that has relied heavily on groundball outs since joining the club, Torres has posted a 2.67 groundout to airout ratio over his first 17.1 innings.   

NO RELATION TO TOM: Wynston Sawyer extended his on-base streak to 26 games on Thursday night thanks to a walk in the second inning. That is tied for the second-longest active swing in the Carolina League, and rates as the second-longest active streak. Salem’s Carson Blair has reached in 27 straight, which is the longest streak of its kind this year (it started on May 20). By reaching base last night, Sawyer also surpassed Glynn Davis’ 25-game jaunt which went from May 9-June 6. Over the 26 games, Sawyer is batting .256 with one homer, six RBIs, four doubles and 14 walks. Last night, Sawyer wrapped up a six-game hitting streak. During that time he hit.348 (8-for-23) with a home run, three RBIs and three runs scored

KELLER JOINS THE KEYS: On Friday, Jon Keller was promoted to Frederick from Low-A Delmarva. He takes the roster spot of Matt Price, who was placed on the disabled list on Wednesday. In 24 relief appearances, Keller went 3-0 with a 1.59 ERA and tallied five saves in eight opportunities. Over 56.2 stanzas, he gave up just 39 hits, walked 14 and struck out 66. Rated the No. 17 prospect in the Orioles system according to Baseball America, the 21-year-old limited opponents to a .192 average, the fourth-lowest mark by a South Atlantic League reliever. Drafted by Baltimore in the 22nd round of the 2013 MLB Draft out of the University of Tampa, Keller helped lead the Spartans to the 2013 Division II College World Series.

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy struggled in his third rehab start with the Keys on Wednesday. Working four-plus innings, the Oklahoma native allowed a career-high six runs on six hits. In the process, Bundy was tagged with his first loss as a member of the Keys. Limited to 75 pitches for the duration of the season, the former fourth-overall pick has struggled in three outings with the orange and black. In 11.2 innings he has given up 12 runs (9.26 ERA) and has surrendered 15 hits and walked six. Opponents are hitting .326 against Bundy, while he has not completed five innings in any of his Advanced-A outings.  Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

WHERE’S THE HOME COOKIN?:Since the start of the second half, the orange and black have claimed only one win in 11 games at home. The Keys have not won back-to-back games at home since June 13-15, when the team took three straight from the Pelicans to close out the first-half. That has dropped the club to 17-26 in home games, the worst mark in the Carolina League. Additionally, Frederick’s 17 home wins is the fewest in the CL, with Wilmington’s 22 victories the next fewest. In contrast, the Keys road record is tied for the second-best in the league with Potomac (23-21). Only Myrtle Beach (32-17) has fared better in road tilts.

MOVING ON UP!: Mike Yastrzemski was promoted to Double-A Bowie on Wednesday after a sterling 23-game stretch with the Keys. During that time, he hit .312 with a home run, 19 RBIs, seven doubles, two triples and 21 runs scored. The grandson of Hall of Famer and former Red Sox great, Carl Yastrzemski, the former Vanderbilt Commodore becomes the second Frederick player to advance to Double-A for the first time this season. Mychal Givens was moved up to Bowie on June 21. At his best during the first week of July, Yastrzemski became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014, when he accomplished the feat on July 5 at Lynchburg. Going 5-for-6 with a homer, a triple, two doubles and five RBIs, the Massachusetts native became the first Keys player to hit for the cycle since May 2, 2005, when Jeff Fiorentino did it against Winston-Salem. In a corresponding move, Frederick received Lucas Herbst from Low-A Delmarva.

BURGESS NAMED PLAYER OF THE MONTH: Last Thursday, Michael Burgess received word that he had been named the Carolina League Player of the Month for June. The announcement was made on Thursday afternoon by Minor League Baseball. The award was voted on by all eight of the league’s managers. Burgess enjoyed a monster June, hitting .371 with nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and 22 RBIs. The nine longballs were the most by a CL player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer during that month. Burgess also led the CL in total bases (73), extra-base hits (19), and slugging percentage (.820). He placed second in the circuit in batting average and triples, while his 22 RBIs were third-most by a CL player during the season’s third month. Entering Friday’s action, the Tampa native is tops in the circuit in RBIs (67), extra-base hits (48), total bases (178), slugging percentage (.580) and home run to at-bat ratio (1/20.47), while he is tied for the lead in doubles (29). Additionally, Burgess rates second in homers (15), and fourth in hits (94) and batting average (.310).

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19) and Branden Kline (20). Trey Mancini (25) joined the club following the All-Star break, while Mychal Givens (23) opened the season with the Keys, but was moved up to Double-A on June 21. Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER:  Right-hander Joe Gunkel makes his sixth start with the Red Sox on Friday and his 23rd overall appearance of the season. His last outing came last Saturday at Wilmington, where the righty tossed 5.2 innings of two-hit baseball and allowed only one unearned run. It was his second-longest outing as a member of the Sox, but he received a no-decision. After tonight’s outing, half of Gunkel’s starts will have come against Frederick. A team that has not treated him kindly, Gunkel is 0-2 with an 8.00 ERA (9 IP/12R/17H) against the orange and black. Promoted after the All-Star break, the righty began the year at Low-A Greenville. In 17 games (five starts), he went 3-0 with a 2.28 ERA. Named a South Atlantic League All-Star, Gunkel was dominant as a relief pitcher, tallying a 1.50 ERA over 12 games. The 23-year-old was also a New York-Penn League All-Star in 2013, after being selected by Boston in the 18th round of the 2013 draft. Tallying a 1.35 ERA, Gunkel held opponents off the board in 13 of the 14 games he pitched last year. Gunkel played his college baseball at West Chester University, a Division II school which is located just outside of Philadelphia. The ace of the club’s pitching staff, he went 9-0 with a 2.07 ERA over 81 innings and helped lead the Rams to a Division II World Series title. Gunkel was expected to be drafted somewhere between rounds seven-ten, but fell to the 18th round, where Boston scooped him up. Employing a low-three quarters arm slot, he throws a low 90s fastball, a slider, and a changeup.

 

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-17-14

Good Evening Keys Fans!

The Keys try and bounce back after losing the series opener to the Salem Red Sox on Wednesday night against LewisGale Field. To do it, the team will turn to Brady Wager. He will be countered by sinkerballer Pat Light.

Doug Raftery has the call on 1450 AM The Source as well as frederickkeys.com beginning at 6:50 p.m. First pitch is at 7. To tide you over, some game notes are below.

Shake your keys!

Geoff

Wednesday, July 17, 2014 · Game #93 · Road Game #50

Frederick Keys (42-50/10-15) vs Salem Red Sox (45-48/12-13)

RHP Brady Wager (3-7, 5.89) vs. RHP Pat Light (3-4, 5.53)

CLOSE BUT NO CIGAR: The Frederick Keys battled back from a 6-0 deficit, but a late charge was not enough, as the Salem Red Sox scored an 8-5 win on Wednesday night at LewisGale Field. It was Frederick’s fourth straight loss. Six of the eight Red Sox runs were pinned on Dylan Bundy, who was making his third rehab start with the Keys and his sixth since returning from “Tommy John” surgery last June. The Red Sox grabbed a 2-0 lead in the second, after a single by Carson Blair, a double by Kendrick Perkins and a two-run single by Mario Martinez. Salem added single tallies in the third and fourth, before posting two more in the fifth. Dreily Guerrero led off the inning with a walk, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on an RBI single by Matty Johnson to end Bundy’s night. Later in the inning, Johnson would steal second and come home on a base hit by Kevin Heller off Jimmy Yacabonis. The Keys cut the Red Sox lead in half in the sixth. After a leadoff walk to Lucas Herbst and a single by Michael Burgess, Brenden Webb doubled both men home, and scored two batters later on a single by Steel Russell. Down 6-3, the orange and black pulled within a run in the eighth thanks to a two-run homer by Adrian Marin, but Frederick would get no closer. With a runner at first, Jerome Pena reached on an infield single, while third baseman Mario Martinez threw the ball away. Trying to score, Russell was thrown out at the plate by right fielder Aneury Tavarez, before the Sox added two more to close things out.

GOING THE WRONG WAY: Following the Keys season-best six-game winning streak, the team has dropped four straight, the club’s second-longest losing streak of the second-half. That team’s longest slide lasted seven games (June 21-27) and went down as the club’s longest downswing of the year. Fortunately, the Keys have fared well against the Red Sox this season. Despite losing to their commonwealth foe on Wednesday, Frederick is 8-4 against Salem, the Keys best head-to-head record against any CL club in 2014. Although the orange and black have more wins against Myrtle Beach (nine), Frederick has lost eight times to the Pelicans.

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy struggled in his third rehab start with the Keys on Wednesday. Working four-plus innings, the Oklahoma native allowed a career-high six runs on six hits. In the process, Bundy was tagged with his first loss as a member of the Keys. Limited to 75 pitches for the duration of the season, the former fourth-overall pick has struggled in three outings with the orange and black. In 11.2 innings he has given up 12 runs (9.26 ERA) and has surrendered 15 hits and walked six. Opponents are hitting .326 against Bundy, while he has not completed five innings in any of his Advanced-A outings.  Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Frederick’s struggles in series openers continued on Wednesday. The Keys have dropped the first game in three of the last four sets they have played, while on the year, the Keys are 9-20 in series openers. In 2014, when Frederick loses the first game, the club has lost the series on 12 occasions. Earlier this season, the orange and black lost 10 straight series openers (April 23-May 27).

WHERE’S THE HOME COOKIN?: Since the start of the second half, the orange and black have claimed only one win in 11 games at home. The Keys have not won back-to-back games at home since June 13-15, when the team took three straight from the Pelicans to close out the first-half. That has dropped the club to 17-26 in home games, the worst mark in the Carolina League. Additionally, Frederick’s 17 home wins is the fewest in the CL, with Wilmington’s 22 victories the next fewest. In contrast, the Keys road record is tied for the third-best in the league. Only Myrtle Beach (50-42) and Potomac (23-21) have fared better in road tilts.

MOVING ON UP!: Mike Yastrzemski has been promoted to Double-A Bowie after a sterling 23-game stretch with the Keys. During that time, he hit .312 with a home run, 19 RBIs, seven doubles, two triples and 21 runs scored. The grandson of Hall of Famer and former Red Sox great, Carl Yastrzemski, the former Vanderbilt Commodore becomes the second Frederick player to advance to Double-A for the first time this season. Mychal Givens was moved up to Bowie on June 21. At his best during the first week of July, Yastrzemski became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014, when he accomplished the feat on July 5 at Lynchburg. Going 5-for-6 with a homer, a triple, two doubles and five RBIs, the Massachusetts native became the first Keys player to hit for the cycle since May 2, 2005, when Jeff Fiorentino did it against Winston-Salem. In a corresponding move, Frederick received Lucas Herbst from Low-A Delmarva.

NO RELATION TO TOM: Wynston Sawyer extended his on-base streak to 25 games on Sunday night thanks to a single in the seventh inning. That swing is second-longest active streak in the Carolina League, and is tied for the third-longest by a Carolina Leaguer this year. Salem’s Carson Blair has reached in 26 straight, which is the longest active streak in the circuit, and is tied for the longest in the league this season, along with Carolina’s Joe Sever. Meanwhile, Sawyer is tied with teammate, Glynn Davis, who reached in 25 straight from May 9-June 6. Over the 25 games, Sawyer is batting .263 with one homer, six RBIs, four doubles and 12 walks. Currently on a six-game hitting streak, Sawyer is batting .348 (8-for-23) during that time with a home run, three RBIs and three runs scored, while it has raised his average from .196 to .215 the highest it has been since May 5.   

BURGESS NAMED PLAYER OF THE MONTH: Last Thursday, Michael Burgess received word that he had been named the Carolina League Player of the Month for June. The announcement was made on Thursday afternoon by Minor League Baseball. The award was voted on by all eight of the league’s managers. Burgess enjoyed a monster June, hitting .371 with nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and 22 RBIs. The nine longballs were the most by a CL player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer during that month. Burgess also led the CL in total bases (73), extra-base hits (19), and slugging percentage (.820). He placed second in the circuit in batting average and triples, while his 22 RBIs were third-most by a CL player during the season’s third month. Entering Thursday’s action, the Tampa native is tops in the circuit in RBIs (67), extra-base hits (48), total bases (176), slugging percentage (.581) and home run to at-bat ratio (1/20.20) and tied for the lead in doubles (29). Additionally, he rates second in homers (15), and fourth in hits (94) and batting average (.310).

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19) and Branden Kline (20). Trey Mancini (25) joined the club following the All-Star break, while Mychal Givens (23) opened the season with the Keys, but was moved up to Double-A on June 21. Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER:  Right-hander Pat Light makes his 15th start of the season and his second against Frederick. He’s most recent outing against the Keys came last Thursday, when he tossed six innings of one-run, six hit baseball. Although he received a no-decision, it was Light’s second straight quality start. Excellent in his last three outings, the Garden State native is 2-0 in his last three starts with a 1.06 ERA (17IP/2ER).  Light experienced a learning curve in the first-half, going 1-2 with a 5.00 ERA (45 IP/25ER) over nine starts. He made his debut with Salem on April 24, after opening the season with Low-A Greenville. There, he went 2-0 with a 4.15 ERA over three starts. Rated the No. 21 prospect in the Red Sox system entering 2013 by Baseball America, the 23-year-old battled injuries and spent three tours on the disabled list last season. Limited to only 13 games (12 starts), he went a combined 1-4 with a 7.34 ERA between the GCL Red Sox and Greenville. Selected by Boston in the sandwich round (39th overall) of the 2012 draft out of Monmouth University, he signed for $1 million, below the assigned value pick of $1,394, 300. The highest draft pick in school history, he set a Hawks school record with 102 strikeouts as a junior, and led the Northeast Conference in that category. He was also selected by Minnesota in the 29th round of the 2009 draft but did not sign. Light throws a fastball than can reach the mid-90s with heavy sink. He also throws a slider and a changeup.

 

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-16-14

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

After a pseudo-three game series at home, the Keys head back to a familiar location: Salem, VA. That’s right folks! One last trip to the Roanoke Valley to wrap up the road portion of the regular-season schedule with the Salem Red Sox.

Dylan Bundy gets another crack at the Sox, after he allowed three runs over three-plus innings last Thursday night. Per Buck Showalter’s orders, the Oklahoma native will only throw 75 pitches. Bundy will be countered by Red Sox righty Justin Haley.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m from the Roanoke Valley, and the talented Doug Raftery has got you covered beginning at 6:50.

Some game notes are below.

Shake your keys!

Geoff

Wednesday, July 16, 2014 · Game #92 · Road Game #49

Frederick Keys (42-49/10-14) vs Salem Red Sox (44-48/11-13)

RHP Dylan Bundy (0-0, 7.04) vs. RHP Justin Haley (6-3, 2.73)

RAINED OUT: For the second straight homestand, the Keys had a game rained out. Scheduled to conclude a four-game series with Potomac on Monday night, the Keys and the Nationals never got underway. The two sides will make the game up as part of a doubleheader on August 31, beginning at 4 p.m. The Keys are now scheduled to play two twinbills during their final homestand of the year, as Frederick and Salem are also scheduled to play a pair on August 27.

ON THE WHEEL: The Frederick Keys left 10 on base, while Tony Renda provided the go-ahead RBI single for the Potomac Nationals in the top of the 13th, to hand the Keys a 2-1 extra-inning loss on Sunday night at Harry Grove Stadium. It was the club’s third straight loss, and their 10th in 11 games at home. Frederick thought it had grabbed a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the third. With the bases loaded, Jason Esposito cleared the left field wall, but the ball was ruled foul by home plate umpire Mike Provine. Following a conference between both umpires, the call stood, and Esposito was retired on a flyout to left. He along with coach Shawn Roof were later ejected by base umpire Chase Eade. In the seventh, both sides exchanged single tallies. Following a single by Randolph Oduber, a sac-bunt by Stephen Perez and a fielder’s choice, Justin Miller stroked an RBI single to center. The Keys countered with a double by Adrian Marin, a single by Wynston Sawyer and a sac-fly by Mike Yastrzemski. That’s how things would stay until the 13th, when the Nationals pushed across the game-winning run. With one out Estarlin Martinez doubled, before Renda cranked a single up the middle off Lex Rutledge, Renda’s first hit of the game. Jake Walsh retired the Keys in the ninth to earn his first Carolina League win.     

WHERE’S THE HOME COOKIN?: Since the start of the second half, the orange and black have claimed only one win in 11 games at home. The Keys have not won back-to-back games at home since June 13-15, when the team took three straight from the Pelicans to close out the first-half. That has dropped the club to 17-26 in home games, the worst mark in the Carolina League. Additionally, Frederick’s 17 home wins is the fewest in the CL, with Wilmington’s 22 victories the next fewest. In contrast, the Keys road record is tied for the second-best in the league along with Potomac (23-21). Myrtle Beach holds the best road record at 31-16.

MOVING ON UP!: Mike Yastrzemski has been promoted to Double-A Bowie after a sterling 23-game stretch with the Keys. During that time, he hit .312 with a home run, 19 RBIs, seven doubles, two triples and 21 runs scored. The grandson of Hall of Famer and former Red Sox great, Carl Yastrzemski, the former Vanderbilt Commodore becomes the second Frederick player to advance to Double-A for the first time this season. Mychal Givens was moved up to Bowie on June 21. At his best during the first week of July, Yastrzemski became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014, when he accomplished the feat on July 5 at Lynchburg. Going 5-for-6 with a homer, a triple, two doubles and five RBIs, the Massachusetts native became the first Keys player to hit for the cycle since May 2, 2005, when Jeff Fiorentino did it against Winston-Salem. In a corresponding move, Frederick received Lucas Herbst from Low-A Delmarva. Matt Price was also placed on the seven-day DL.

EXTRA TIME:Sunday was Frederick’s 11th extra-inning game of the season, while the 13-inning affair was the longest game (in innings) that the team had played since July 26 of last season, when the Keys defeated the Salem Red Sox 3-2 in 16 innings at Salem Memorial Ballpark. In 2014, all five of Frederick’s extra-inning wins have come on the road, while the team is 0-3 in games stretching past regulation at home. In spite the team’s extra inning struggles at Harry Grove Stadium, the orange and black hold the third-best extra inning record in the Carolina League (5-6). Only Lynchburg (6-1) and Myrtle Beach (4-2) have fared better.

BLACKJACK: Mark Blackmar turned in his fourth quality start on Sunday, while it was statistically his best outing of the season. Over six shutout innings, the right-hander gave up only two hits and one walk while he struck out three. Although he received a no-decision, Blackmar cut his ERA to 3.76, the second-lowest it has been all season. Coming off an outstanding June where he posted a 2.67 ERA (33.2 IP/10R), the Texan has posted a 2.00 ERA in his last three outings (18 IP/4R).

NO RELATION TO TOM: Wynston Sawyer extended his on-base streak to 25 games on Sunday night thanks to a single in the seventh inning. That swing is tied for the longest active streak in the Carolina League along with Salem’s Carson Blair, who has also reached in 25 straight. The Californian’s streak kicked off on May 21. Over the 25 games, he is batting .265 with one homer and six RBIs, four doubles and 12 walks. Sawyer is also tied with Glynn Davis for the longest on-base streak by a Keys player this season. Davis reached in 25 straight from May 9-June 6. If Sawyer reaches base on Monday, he will tie the longest streak in the CL this year, set by Carolina’s Joe Sever. Currently on a six-game hitting streak, Sawyer is batting .348 (8-for-23) during that time with a home run, three RBIs and three runs scored, while it has raised his average from .196 to .215 the highest it has been since May 5.   

BURGESS NAMED PLAYER OF THE MONTH: On Thursday, Michael Burgess received word that he had been named the Carolina League Player of the Month for June. The announcement was made on Thursday afternoon by Minor League Baseball. The award was voted on by all eight of the league’s managers. Burgess enjoyed a monster June, hitting .371 with nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and 22 RBIs. The nine longballs were the most by a CL player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer during that month. Burgess also led the CL in total bases (73), extra-base hits (19), and slugging percentage (.820). He placed second in the circuit in batting average and triples, while his 22 RBIs were third-most by a CL player during the season’s third month. Entering Wednesday’s action, the Tampa native is tops in the circuit in RBIs (67), extra-base hits (48), total bases (175), slugging percentage (.583) and home run to at-bat ratio (1/20.00) and tied for the lead in doubles (29). Additionally, he rates second in homers (15), and fourth in hits (92) and batting average (.310).

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy made his second rehab start with the Keys last Thursday and his fifth overall. Limited to 75 pitches, the righty last only three-plus innings and surrendered three runs on five hits. The second inning was problematic, as Bundy allowed a pair of runs and needed 32 pitches to escape. He received a no-decision. Bundy’s first outing came on July 4, when he gave up three runs on four hits in 4.2 stanzas. In two starts with the Keys, he has posted a 7.04 ERA (7.2 IP/6R). Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19) and Branden Kline (20). Trey Mancini (25) joined the club following the All-Star break, while Mychal Givens (23) opened the season with the Keys, but was moved up to Double-A on June 21. Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Justin Haley makes his 18th appearance of the season and his 10th start. His most recent outing came last Wednesday against the Keys. Over six innings, he gave up one run on three hits and struck out six. Despite the strong performance, Haley received a no-decision. This is his fourth appearance against the Keys this year, while he is 1-0 with a 1.47 ERA against the orange and black (18.1 IP/3R/13H/20 SO/BB). A member of the Carolina League All-Star team, Haley is fourth in the CL in ERA (2.73), and fourth in WHIP (1.12) while he is the owner of one of only three shutouts in the circuit this year (Frederick’s Brady Wager also has one). This year, opponents are batting only .237 off Haley, while he has been equally challenging for righties (.230) and lefties (.250). In his first year at Advanced-A, Haley spent all of 2013 at Low-A Greensville. In 26 games (24 starts) with the Drive, he went 7-11 with a 3.68 ERA. There, he held opponents to a .219 batting average, fifth-lowest in the South Atlantic League. Still, walks were a problem at times, as the Californian surrendered 74 in 124.2 frames, third-most in the league. The 22-year-old was selected by Boston in the sixth round of the 2012 draft out of Fresno State University. There, he was teammates with current Keys reliever Gene Escat. In two years with the Bulldogs, Haley went 8-4 with a 3.08 ERA in over 33 games. In 125.2 total innings, he struck out 122. Haley was also drafted by Cleveland in the 46th round of the 2010 draft out of Sierra College but did not sign. The right-hander throws a low-90s fastball, a slider and a changeup.

 

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-14-14

Good evening Keys fans!

The Keys take to Harry Grove tonight looking to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Potomac Nationals. The Keys lost last night after Potomac DH Tony Renda’s RBI in the 13th inning drove in RF Estarlin Martinez to give the Nationals the 2-1 victory. The Keys got six scoreless innings out of right-handed starter Mark Blackmar, who allowed only two hits and a walk. Frederick’s lone run came when Mike Yastrzemski hit a sac fly to left field, allowing Adrian Marin to score in the seventh inning.

Right-hander Brady Wager takes the mound for the Keys tonight. Potomac will start righty Brian Rauh.

This is the last home game for the Keys before they hit the road for a series against the Salem Red Sox. The Keys will return to Harry Grove Stadium on Saturday when they open a three-game set against Winston-Salem.

Come on out and shake your keys!

Beloware tonight’s game notes:

Monday, July 14, 2014 · Game #92 · Home Game #44

Frederick Keys (42-49/10-14) vs Potomac Nationals (50-40/12-9)

RHP Brady Wager (3-7, 5.89) vs. RHP Brian Rauh (1-1, 5.22)

ON THE WHEEL: The Frederick Keys left 10 on base, while Tony Renda provided the go-ahead RBI single for the Potomac Nationals in the top of the 13th, to hand the Keys a 2-1 extra-inning loss on Sunday night at Harry Grove Stadium. It was the club’s third straight loss, and their 10th in 11 games at home. Frederick thought it had grabbed a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the third. With the bases loaded, Jason Esposito cleared the left field wall, but the ball was ruled foul by home plate umpire Mike Provine. Following a conference between both umpires, the call stood, and Esposito was retired on a flyout to left. He along with coach Shawn Roof were later ejected by base umpire Chase Eade. In the seventh, both sides exchanged single tallies. Following a single by Randolph Oduber, a sac-bunt by Stephen Perez and a fielder’s choice, Justin Miller stroked an RBI single to center. The Keys countered with a double by Adrian Marin, a single by Wynston Sawyer and a sac-fly by Mike Yastrzemski. That’s how things would stay until the 13th, when the Nationals pushed across the game-winning run. With one out Estarlin Martinez doubled, before Renda cranked a single up the middle off Lex Rutledge, Renda’s first hit of the game. Jake Walsh retired the Keys in the ninth to earn his first Carolina League win.     

WHERE’S THE HOME COOKIN?:Since the start of the second half, the orange and black have claimed only one win in 11 games at home. The Keys have not won back-to-back games at home since June 13-15, when the team took three straight from the Pelicans to close out the first-half. That has dropped the club to 17-26 in home games, the worst mark in the Carolina League. Additionally, Frederick’s 17 home wins is the fewest in the CL, with Wilmington’s 22 victories the next fewest. In contrast, the Keys road record is tied for the second-best in the league along with Potomac (23-21). Myrtle Beach holds the best road record at 31-16.

 EXTRA TIME:Sunday was Frederick’s 11th extra-inning game of the season, while the 13-inning affair was the longest game (in innings) that the team had played since July 26 of last season, when the Keys defeated the Salem Red Sox 3-2 in 16 innings at Salem Memorial Ballpark. In 2014, all five of Frederick’s extra-inning wins have come on the road, while the team is 0-3 in games stretching past regulation at home. In spite the team’s extra inning struggles at Harry Grove Stadium, the orange and black hold the third-best extra inning record in the Carolina League (5-6). Only Lynchburg (6-1) and Myrtle Beach (4-2) have fared better.

 BLACKJACK: Mark Blackmar turned in his fourth quality start on Sunday, while it was statistically his best outing of the season. Over six shutout innings, the right-hander gave up only two hits and one walk while he struck out three. Although he received a no-decision, Blackmar cut his ERA to 3.76, the second-lowest it has been all season. Coming off an outstanding June where he posted a 2.67 ERA (33.2 IP/10R), the Texan has posted a 2.00 ERA in his last three outings (18 IP/4R).

 NO RELATION TO TOM: Wynston Sawyer extended his on-base streak to 25 games on Sunday night thanks to a single in the seventh inning. That swing is tied for the longest active streak in the Carolina League along with Salem’s Carson Blair, who has also reached in 25 straight. The Californian’s streak kicked off on May 21. Over the 25 games, he is batting .265 with one homer and six RBIs, four doubles and 12 walks. Sawyer is also tied with Glynn Davis for the longest on-base streak by a Keys player this season. Davis reached in 25 straight from May 9-June 6. If Sawyer reaches base on Monday, he will tie the longest streak in the CL this year, set by Carolina’s Joe Sever. Currently on a six-game hitting streak, Sawyer is batting .348 (8-for-23) during that time with a home run, three RBIs and three runs scored, while it has raised his average from .196 to .215 the highest it has been since May 5.   

BULL MARKET: Frederick’s offense carried the club during its seven-game roadtrip. Over the trip to Virginia, the club scored 56 runs on 87 hits.  The club finished with 10 or more hits in six of the seven contests, while the Keys finished with 19 knocks in last Saturday’s 17-3 dismantling of the Lynchburg Hillcats at Calvin Falwell Field. Thanks to that impressive display, Frederick is batting .299 as a team over 12 July games, the second-best mark in the Carolina League (Carolina is hitting .301). Mike Yastrzemski has led the way, hitting at .353, while he has driven in 13 runs and scored 13 times in 12 contests.

BURGESS NAMED PLAYER OF THE MONTH: On Thursday, Michael Burgess received word that he had been named the Carolina League Player of the Month for June. The announcement was made on Thursday afternoon by Minor League Baseball. The award was voted on by all eight of the league’s managers. Burgess enjoyed a monster June, hitting .371 with nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and 22 RBIs. The nine longballs were the most by a CL player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer during that month. Burgess also led the CL in total bases (73), extra-base hits (19), and slugging percentage (.820). He placed second in the circuit in batting average and triples, while his 22 RBIs were third-most by a CL player during the season’s third month. Entering Monday’s action, the Tampa native is tops in the circuit in RBIs (67), extra-base hits (48), total bases (175), doubles (29), slugging percentage (.583) and home run to at-bat ratio (1/20.00). Additionally, he rates second in homers (15), and fourth in hits (92) and batting average (.315).

 TYSON FINALIST FOR HALL OF FAME: Keys hitting coach Torre Tyson has been named a finalist for the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame on Monday by the organization’s advisory committee. The winningest manager in Charleston Riverdogs history (Yankees Low-A), Tyson put together a 232-186 record during his tenure with the Riverdogs from 2007-09. Currently, Tyson is in his second year with the Keys as hitting coach, after serving as the Yankees minor league defensive coordinator from 2011-12. Three individuals will be selected for enshrinement, with two being voted on by the fans and one being voted on by the committee. The three individuals will be inducted on August 15, prior to Charleston Riverdogs’ game against the Rome Braves. Notable members of the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame include Roberto Alomar, David Cone and Willie Randolph.

 BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy made his second rehab start with the Keys on Thursday and fifth overall. Limited to 75 pitches, the righty last only three-plus innings and surrendered three runs on five hits. The second inning was problematic, as Bundy allowed a pair of runs and needed 32 pitches to escape. He received a no-decision. Bundy’s first outing came on July 4, when he gave up three runs on four hits in 4.2 stanzas. In two starts with the Keys, he has posted a 7.04 ERA (7.2 IP/6R). Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19), Branden Kline (20) and Mychal Givens (23). Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Brian Rauh makes his 10th appearance of the year as well as his sixth start. His last outing came on Thursday during the second game of a doubleheader. Over one inning, Rauh gave up one run on one hit, before the game was suspended after 5.5 innings. His last start came on the road at Myrtle Beach on June 27, when he gave up six runs on seven hits over three stanzas. Rauh made five appearances in April, but was on the disabled list from May 2-June 21 with an undisclosed injury. In nine games this year, opponents are batting .294 against Rauh, while he has struggled as a starter, tallying a 6.53 ERA over five games (compared to a 2.08 mark as a reliever. Rauh split 2013 between Low-A Hagerstown, Double-A Harrisburg and Potomac. In 31 games (12 starts) he went 7-4 with a 4.50 ERA over 106 frames. He went 4-2 with a 4.22 mark over 16 games with the Nationals. Selected by Washington in the 11th round of the 2012 Draft out of Chapman University, Rauh dominated Division III competition in his three years at the school. Going 30-1 with a 1.78 ERA. He throws a fastball (low-90s), a curveball, a slider and a change.

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!!

The Keys try and even up the series against Potomac at one game apiece.

First pitch is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. tonight. You can catch Doug and I on 1450 AM The Source beginning at 5:45!

Some notes are below.

Shake your keys!

Geoff

Saturday, July 12, 2014 · Game #90 · Home Game #42

Frederick Keys (42-47/10-12) vs Potomac Nationals (48-40/10-9)

RHP Sebastian Vader (1-0, 4.50) vs. LHP Matthew Spann (5-4, 4.15)

OVER AT SIX: Austin Voth twirled seven shutout innings, limiting the Frederick Keys to only two hits, while the Keys mustered only two hits off Richie Mirowski and Jake Walsh in a 4-0 loss to the Potomac Nationals on Friday night at Harry Grove Stadium. The loss snapped the Keys season-best six game winning streak. Despite receiving a seven-inning start from Branden Kline, the Frederick bats could not figure out Voth, who did not allow a hit through his first five innings of work. In the process, the right-hander saw his ERA shrink to 0.35 (26 IP/R) and pushed his scoreless innings streak to 19 innings. Meanwhile, the loss and a win by Wilmington dropped the Keys into third place in the CL Northern Division standings (10-12). This season, the Keys have been shutout six times, while Friday marked the first time that the club had been blanked in the second-half.

WINNING STREAK NOTES: On Friday night, the Keys string of six straight wins came to a close. It was the club’s first six-game streak since June 1-8, 2011, when the club took eight in-a-row against Myrtle Beach, Salem and Potomac. Prior to the recent swing, the club’s longest winning streak had been four games (stretching from April 16-18 against Winston-Salem and Carolina). In 2013 and 2012, Frederick had never won any more than four games in a stretch. Perhaps most impressive, was that all six wins came on the road. Ending the recent seven-game roadtrip 6-1, Frederick pushed its road record to 25-23, the second-best mark in the eight-team circuit (Myrtle Beach is 31-16 in road games this year). In contrast, the Keys home record is the worst in the league at 17-24.

THREE-HEADED MONSTER: For the third straight day, the Keys struggled mightily against an opposing starting pitcher. On Wednesday, Frederick mustered only one run on three hits in six innings against Justin Haley, while Red Sox righty Pat Light gave up one run on six hits over six innings the following day. Following Voth’s performance on Friday, the Keys have scored only two runs on 11 hits in 19 frames against the last three starters they have faced. Voth’s performance was one of the best of the year by an opposing starter. Surrendering only two hits through seven stanzas, the former Washington Husky became the fourth visiting pitcher to carry a no-hitter through five innings or more against the Keys this season. Voth lost the no-hitter in the sixth, when Wynston Sawyer began the inning with a single. In addition to Voth, former Myrtle Beach starter Chi Chi Gonzalez (six innings), Carolina’s Dylan Baker (six innings) and Wilmington’s Luis Santos (five innings) have also kept the Keys out of the hit column for five frames or more.

NO HOME COOKIN: Branden Kline turned in his sixth seven-inning start of the season on Friday, but was hit with his fourth loss of the year. Allowing four runs on eight hits, the Frederick native walked two and struck out four. Saturday’s loss ended a two-game winning streak, while Kline remained winless at Harry Grove Stadium. Over eight games at the friendly confines this year, Kline is 0-4 with a 5.02 ERA.

BULL MARKET: Frederick’s offense carried the club during its seven-game roadtrip. Over the trip to Virginia, the club scored 56 runs on 87 hits.  The club finished with 10 or more hits in six of the seven contests, while the Keys finished with 19 knocks in last Saturday’s 17-3 dismantling of the Lynchburg Hillcats at Calvin Falwell Field. Thanks to that impressive display, Frederick is batting .304 as a team over 10 July games, the second-best mark in the Carolina League (Carolina is hitting .308). Glynn Davis has led the way during that time, batting .367, while Mike Yastrzemski is one point below at .366, and has driven in 12 runs and scored 13 times in 10 contests.

BURGESS NAMED PLAYER OF THE MONTH: On Thursday, Michael Burgess received word that he had been named the Carolina League Player of the Month for June. The announcement was made on Thursday afternoon by Minor League Baseball. The award was voted on by all eight of the league’s managers. Burgess enjoyed a monster June, hitting .371 with nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and 22 RBIs. The nine longballs were the most by a CL player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer during that month. Burgess also led the CL in total bases (73), extra-base hits (19), and slugging percentage (.820). He placed second in the circuit in batting average and triples, while his 22 RBIs were third-most by a CL player during the season’s third month. Entering Saturday’s action, the Tampa native is tops in the circuit in RBIs (66), extra-base hits (47), and total bases (173) while he is tied for the lead in doubles (28). Additionally, he rates second in homers (15), slugging percentage (.595), home run to at-bat ratio (1/19.40) and, is tied for second in hits (92) and is fifth in batting average (.316).

YASTRZEMSKI NAMED PLAYER OF WEEK:On Monday morning, Mike Yastrzemski was named the Carolina League “Player of the Week” for June 30-July 6. The first weekly honor of his professional career, the 23-year-old hit .400 (12-for-22) over six games with a home run, a triple, four doubles, eight RBIs and nine runs scored. The nine runs scored were the most by a Carolina League player over the last week, while only Michael Burgess (12) ended with more RBIs. The majority of Yastrzemski’s damage came on Saturday night, when he became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014. In total, four Keys players have now earned weekly honors this season. Burgess and Adrian Marin also received player of the week recognition, while Parker Bridwell was named the CL’s pitcher of the week for May 12-19. The four weekly winners eclipses last year’s total of three, when Michael Ohlman (twice) and Christian Walker took home player of the week honors three weeks in-a-row.

TYSON FINALIST FOR HALL OF FAME: Keys hitting coach Torre Tyson has been named a finalist for the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame on Monday by the organization’s advisory committee. The winningest manager in Charleston Riverdogs history (Yankees Low-A), Tyson put together a 232-186 record during his tenure with the Riverdogs from 2007-09. Currently, Tyson is in his second year with the Keys as hitting coach, after serving as the Yankees minor league defensive coordinator from 2011-12. Three individuals will be selected for enshrinement, with two being voted on by the fans and one being voted on by the committee. The three individuals will be inducted on August 15, prior to Charleston Riverdogs’ game against the Rome Braves. Notable members of the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame include Roberto Alomar, David Cone and Willie Randolph.

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy made his second rehab start with the Keys on Thursday and fifth overall. Limited to 75 pitches, the righty last only three-plus innings and surrendered three runs on five hits. The second inning was problematic, as Bundy allowed a pair of runs and needed 32 pitches to escape. He received a no-decision. Bundy’s first outing came on July 4, when he gave up three runs on four hits in 4.2 stanzas. In two starts with the Keys, he has posted a 7.04 ERA (7.2 IP/6R). Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

LONELY ISLAND: Since the start of the second-half, the Keys pitching staff has taken its lumps. Over the first 22 games of the second-half, Keys arms have posted a 5.91 ERA (190.1 IP/125ER) and allowed 222 hits during that time as well as 19 home runs. This year, Frederick arms have given up 59 home runs, the second-most longballs allowed by a CL pitching staff.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19), Branden Kline (20) and Mychal Givens (23). Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Left-hander Matthew Spann makes his 15th appearance with the Nationals on Saturday as well as his 10th start. His most recent outing came last Sunday against Myrtle Beach. Turning in his third quality start of the season, the lefty gave up one run on seven hits over six innings, while he walked four and struck out four. It was his third straight defeat. A member of the rotation since late-May, Spann is 2-4 with a 4.75 ERA as a starter and 3-0 with one save to go along with a 2.03 ERA in five games as a relief pitcher. June was a rough month for Spann, who tallied a 6.04 ERA over five appearances (25.1 stanzas). In 25.1 frames, he gave up 19 runs (17 earned) while opponents hit .302 against him. Spann began the year at Low-A Hagerstown, and recorded a 2-0 record and a 1.20 ERA over 20 relief appearances. In 15 innings, he gave up just two runs and 13 hits, while opponents hit .228 against him. Selected by the Rays in the 25th round of the 2010 MLB Draft out of Columbia Central High School (TN), Spann was acquired by Washington in late-August of 2013 as part of a trade which sent veteran MLB outfielder David DeJesus from Washington to Tampa Bay. Before joining Washington, Spann was 4-3 with a 2.87 ERA over 19 games for Low-A Bowling Green. He spent 2012 with Short-Season Hudson Valley. A native of Columbia, Tennessee, Spann’s hometown is known as the “Mule Capital of the World.” It is roughly one hour south of Nashville.

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-11-14

Good Evening Keys Fans!

The Keys try for their first seven-game winning streak since 2011 when the team begins a four-game homestand tonight against Potomac.

Catch me and Doug Raftery on the radio tonight at 6:45 before first pitch at 7:00! All the action can be heard on 1450 AM The Source. Some game notes are below!

shake your keys!

Geoff

Friday, July 11, 2014 · Game #89 · Home Game #41

Frederick Keys (42-46/10-11) vs Potomac Nationals (47-40/9-9)

RHP Branden Kline (5-3, 3.83) vs. RHP Austin Voth (1-0, 0.47)

DON’T STOP NOW BOYS!: The Frederick Keys completed a four-game road sweep of the Salem Red Sox on Thursday night, with a 5-4 win at LewisGale Field. It was the Keys sixth straight win, and put a capper on the best roadtrip of the season. Over the seven-game swing, Frederick went 6-1, while the club jumped up to second place in the CL Northern Division second-half standings (10-11) from fourth (4-10). Making his second rehab start with the Keys since undergoing “Tommy John” surgery last June, Dylan Bundy allowed two runs in the second on RBI singles by Kendrick Perkins and Jordan Weems, while an RBI single by Mario Martinez knocked him out in the fourth. From there, the Keys scored the next three runs. A double by Michael Burgess and a sac-fly by Brenden Webb got the orange and black on the board, while a two-run single by Trey Mancini leveled the count in the seventh. In the ninth, the Keys took the lead for good. After a one-out single by Jerome Pena, Mike Yastrzemski drove his teammate home with a double to right-center. Two batters later, Mancini went back to work, with a double to right-center. Dennis Torres gave up one run in the ninth, but held on to pick up his first Carolina League win.

IT’S CALLED A WINNING STREAK: The Keys have won six straight games for the first time since June 1-8, 2011, when the club took eight straight against Myrtle Beach, Salem and Potomac. Prior to the recent roadtrip, the club’s longest winning streak (stretching from April 16-18 against Winston-Salem and Carolina). In 2012 and 2013 Frederick’s longest winning streak was just four games.

BULL MARKET: Frederick’s offense carried the club during its seven-game roadtrip. Over the trip to Virginia, the club scored 56 runs on 87 hits.  The club finished with 10 or more hits in six of the seven contests, while the Keys finished with 19 knocks in last Saturday’s 17-3 dismantling of the Lynchburg Hillcats at Calvin Falwell Field. Thanks to that impressive display, Frederick is batting .320 as a team over nine July games, the best mark in the Carolina League. Mike Yastrzemski has led the way during that time, batting .405 in nine road tilts with 12 RBIs. A team that has gotten great production from top to bottom during that time, the Keys currently have five players riding hitting streaks of five games or better. That list includes Michael Burgess (seven games), Zane Chavez (six games), Glynn Davis (five games), Jason Esposito (eight games), and Yastrzemski (seven games)

RBI GUY: Trey Mancini finished out his roadtrip on a high note,going 2-for-5 on Thursday with three RBIs. It was his second three RBI game in four contests, while the Floridian has driven in 20 over his first 21 games in the Carolina League. Owner of a four-game hitting streak, Mancini is 6 for his last 19 with two doubles, three runs scored, and seven RBIs. Despite being known as a power threat, Mancini’s strikeout numbers are low, whiffing only 11 times in 86 at-bats.

BURGESS NAMED PLAYER OF THE MONTH: On Thursday, Michael Burgess received word that he had been named the Carolina League Player of the Month for June. The announcement was made on Thursday afternoon by Minor League Baseball. The award was voted on by all eight of the league’s managers. Burgess enjoyed a monster June, hitting .371 with nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and 22 RBIs. The nine longballs were the most by a CL player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer during that month. Burgess also led the CL in total bases (73), extra-base hits (19), and slugging percentage (.820). He placed second in the circuit in batting average and triples, while his 22 RBIs were third-most by a CL player during the season’s third month. Entering Friday’s action, the Tampa native is tops in the circuit in RBIs (66), extra-base hits (47), and total bases (172) while he is tied for the lead in doubles (28). Additionally, he rates second in homers (15), slugging percentage (.599), home run to at-bat ratio (1/19.13), is third in hits (91) and is fifth in batting average (.315).

YASTRZEMSKI NAMED PLAYER OF WEEK:On Monday morning, Mike Yastrzemski was named the Carolina League “Player of the Week” for June 30-July 6. The first weekly honor of his professional career, the 23-year-old hit .400 (12-for-22) over six games with a home run, a triple, four doubles, eight RBIs and nine runs scored. The nine runs scored were the most by a Carolina League player over the last week, while only Michael Burgess (12) ended with more RBIs. The majority of Yastrzemski’s damage came on Saturday night, when he became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014. In total, four Keys players have now earned weekly honors this season. Burgess and Adrian Marin also received player of the week recognition, while Parker Bridwell was named the CL’s pitcher of the week for May 12-19. The four weekly winners eclipses last year’s total of three, when Michael Ohlman (twice) and Christian Walker took home player of the week honors three weeks in-a-row.

TYSON FINALIST FOR HALL OF FAME: Keys hitting coach Torre Tyson has been named a finalist for the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame on Monday by the organization’s advisory committee. The winningest manager in Charleston Riverdogs history (Yankees Low-A), Tyson put together a 232-186 record during his tenure with the Riverdogs from 2007-09. Currently, Tyson is in his second year with the Keys as hitting coach, after serving as the Yankees minor league defensive coordinator from 2011-12. Three individuals will be selected for enshrinement, with two being voted on by the fans and one being voted on by the committee. The three individuals will be inducted on August 15, prior to Charleston Riverdogs’ game against the Rome Braves. Notable members of the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame include Roberto Alomar, David Cone and Willie Randolph.

BUNDY BLURBS: Dylan Bundy made his second rehab start with the Keys on Thursday and fifth overall. Limited to 75 pitches, the righty last only three-plus innings and surrendered three runs on five hits. The second inning was problematic, as Bundy allowed a pair of runs and needed 32 pitches to escape. He received a no-decision. Bundy’s first outing came on July 4, when he gave up three runs on four hits in 4.2 stanzas. In two starts with the Keys, he has posted a 7.04 ERA (7.2 IP/6R). Prior to joining Frederick, the righty made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, Bundy went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, he allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

LONELY ISLAND: Since the start of the second-half, the Keys pitching staff has taken its lumps. Over the first 21 games of the second-half, Keys arms have posted a 6.01 ERA (181.1 IP/121ER) and allowed 222 hits during that time as well as 19 home runs. This year, Frederick arms have given up 59 home runs, the second-most longballs allowed by a CL pitching staff.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19), Branden Kline (20) and Mychal Givens (23). Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Austin Voth will toe the slab for the fourth time this year at Advanced-A with Potomac. In his last outing on Saturday, the righty tossed six shutout innings of three-hit baseball and struck out seven, but received a no-decision. Over his first 19 Carolina League innings he has given up one run on seven hits. A 5th round pick last year by the Washington Nationals, Voth dominated at Low-A Hagerstown, recording a 4-3, 2.45 line in 13 starts. In 69.2 IP, he gave up 51 hits, 19 earned runs, and struck out 74 to just 22 walks (opponents his .206 against him). He had the third-best ERA in the South Atlantic League, second-lowest BAA (Harvey: .200), and third-best strikeout per nine inning ratio (9.56). Taken out of the University of Washington, the former Huskie had a solid but unspectacular three-year career. His best season was his junior year, when he went 7-6 with a 2.99 ERA. He spent two summers in the ever-popular Cape Cod League, where he ditched his “bendy” curveball, as he called it, for a slider in 2012, which has developed into a promising pitch. The righty’s bread and butter is his fastball, which tends to sit in the 89-92 mph range for the first five innings, then bumps to 95 in the middle innings. He also has an average changeup with late sinking action.

 

The Streak is at Six!!

Good Morning Keys Fans!!

The Keys completed a four-game sweep of the Salem Red Sox on Thursday night and have now won six in-a-row! It is the Keys longest winning streak since July 14-19, 2011, when the club took six straight against Wilmington and Salem. After a 1-8 start to the second-half, the orange and black are now within one gave of the .500 mark (10-11) with a chance to gain some ground in the CL North standings. With Thursday’s victory, the Keys are now tied for second with Wilmington, and trail Potomac by only half a game. That means a Friday win will move Frederick into first place, given that the P-Nats are the team the Keys will be facing. A couple of closing notes from the roadtrip:

- Michael Burgess continued his assault on Carolina League pitching. During the roadtrip he went 13-for-31 with two homers, seven doubles, 11 RBIs and eight runs scored. He is batting .317 on the year and is at the top of every triple crown category. Burgess leads all active CL players in home runs (15)-second to Joey Gallo who is now in Double-A-and leads in RBIs (66), while he is fifth in batting average (.317). He also leads the league in total bases (172) and extra-base hits (47), is tied for the lead in doubles (28), is second in slugging percentage (.599) and  third in hits (91). That impressive body of work can be attributed to an outstanding June. On Thursday afternoon, he was recognized as the Carolina League Player of the month for June. Here is a link to the full release.

-Mike Yastrzemski was named the Carolina League Player of the Week after hitting .400 (12-for-22) with a homer, a triple, four doubles and eight RBIs and nine runs scored over a six-game stretch. That was highlighted by a cycle on Saturday night. It was the first by a Key since May 2, 2005, when Jeff Fiorentino did the trick against Winston-Salem. Yastrzemski wouldn’t stop there, hitting a combined .412 (14-for-34) with a homer, two triples, five doubles,  11 RBIs and 12 runs scored. Not bad…

-Dylan Bundy made a pair of rehab starts on the road as he recovers from Tommy John surgery last June. In his first outing at Lynchburg, the righty allowed three runs over 4.2 innings, while on Thursday he surrendered three runs in three-plus innings. Buck Showalter announced on Wednesday that Bundy will be limited to 75 pitches a game in each of his outings this year. However, he won’t be precluded from joining the Orioles in September if need-be. No word on what Bundy’s next step is after Thursday’s outing.

-Wynston Sawyer has reached base in 22 straight games, a streak that dates back to May 21

Overall, plenty to be happy about going into the upcoming homestand. One where there will be lots of great baseball to watch, but also one that will feature a number of great promotions.

The fun begins on Friday with Daddy Daughter Date Night. So dad’s spend some time with your daughter, and enjoy a fireworks SUPER SHOW after the game.

Saturday night should also be a ton of fun. There will be a Scout Night Sleepover after the game presented by Wegmans. So scout troops…. unite! Come pitch a tent, watch a movie and enjoy a fun night at Harry Grove Stadium.

On Sunday come on out for Sunday Funday sponsored by Hearfields of Frederick! There will be a pregame catch in the outfield, as well as a chance to meet players before the game and get autographs! First pitch is slated for 4 p.m.

The series wraps up on Monday with Kids Eat Free Night, as well as Social Media Night! So if you follow the Frederick Keys and twitter, facebook or both? We are going to be relying on YOU to help us run the show! There will also be a “Tweet Me in the Club” special.

And there you have it. A TON of fun to be had over the next four days at the Grove. So make sure and join us tomorrow night, and see if the Keys can make it seven straight wins!

Until tonight, shake your keys!

Geoff

Frederick Keys Game Notes 7-8-14

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

The orange and black try and tie their longest winning streak of the season on Tuesday night, as Brady Wager takes the mound against Salem lefty Cody Kukuk.

First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m, and the broadcast can be heard on 1450 AM The Source. Some game notes are below.

Shake your Keys!

Geoff

Tuesday, July 8, 2014 · Game #86 · Road Game #46

Frederick Keys (39-46/7-11) vs Salem Red Sox (42-44/9-9)

RHP Brady Wager (3-7, 5.62) vs. LHP Cody Kukuk (2-6, 7.30)

NO FINGERNAILS LEFT:The Salem Red Sox mounted a late rally, scoring the final five runs of the game, however the Frederick Keys managed to hang on for a 9-8 win on Monday night at LewisGale Field. Trailing 9-3, the Sox gradually chipped away, scoring one run in the seventh, before batting around in the eighth. Utilizing an RBI single by Matt Gedman, three straight walks, a wild pitch, and a two-run base knock by Reed Gragnani, the Sox pulled within one, but Matt Price struck out Jantzen Witte with the tying run at third. In the ninth though, Price retired the Sox in order to give the Keys their third straight win. On Tuesday, the club tries to tie its longest winning streak of the season, a four-game stretch from April 16-18 against Winston-Salem and Carolina. Since that time, the Keys have put together three three-game winning streaks (with the most recent coming from June 13-15 against Myrtle Beach), but the team has not earned four straight victories.

GIVE AND TAKE: In the series opener, the Keys handed out eight walks, the second-most the Keys pitching staff had handed out in a game this year. Mark Blackmar and Matt Price each issued three walks and Matt Hobgood issued a pair. All three of the free tickets by Price came in succession in the bottom of the eighth, while Blackmar walked three for the second straight start. Entering his start yesterday, the Texan had not allowed multiple walks in back-to-back games all year. The eight free passes came three short of the club’s season-high of 11 on April 23 against Myrtle Beach. Fortunately, the Keys were beneficiaries of five Salem errors, tied for the most committed by an opponent this year. Three were pinned on Aneury Tavarez, including two on one play.

BOOMER: Trey Mancini led the way for the Keys offensively on Tuesday, going 2-for-5 with three RBIs. That included a two-run double in the fifth. Promoted to the Keys on June 19 from Low-A Delmarva, the former Big East batting champion has recorded an RBI in three straight games and a total of 16 over his first 18 Carolina League games. That includes two three-RBI games, as well as a four-RBI game in his CL debut. A player equipped with plenty of power, nine of Mancini’s 19 Advanced-A hits have gone for extra-bases.

YASTRZEMSKI NAMED PLAYER OF WEEK:On Monday morning, Mike Yastrzemski was named the Carolina League “Player of the Week” for June 30-July 6. The first weekly honor of his professional career, the 23-year-old hit .400 (12-for-22) over six games with a home run, a triple, four doubles, eight RBIs and nine runs scored. The nine runs scored were the most by a Carolina League player over the last week, while only Michael Burgess (12) ended with more RBIs. The majority of Yastrzemski’s damage came on Saturday night, when he became the 12th minor leaguer to hit for the cycle in 2014. In total, four Keys players have now earned weekly honors this season. Burgess and Adrian Marin also received player of the week recognition, while Parker Bridwell was named the CL’s pitcher of the week for May 12-19. The four weekly winners eclipses last year’s total of three, when Michael Ohlman (twice) and Christian Walker took home player of the week honors three weeks in-a-row.

BIG MIKE: Although Yastrzemski’s last week was a memorable one, Michael Burgess also put together a fine showing. Over six games, the Floridian hit .400 (10-for-25) with three homers, 12 RBIs, four doubles and seven extra-base hits. The 12 RBIs were tied for the most by an Advanced-A ballplayer, and were tied for the second-most by a minor leaguer. Burgess was outstanding on Saturday, going 4-for-6 with two homers, a double, four RBIs and four runs scored, while he became the first Keys player to hit multiple home runs in a game this year. It was his ninth game of two homers or more since 2008, and the first multi-homer game by a Frederick player since August 26, 2013, when Michael Mosby hit a pair of longballs at Lynchburg. Currently, Burgess leads the Carolina League in RBIs (63), and is the active leader in home runs (15). He also leads the loop in extra-base hits (44) and total bases (164) while rating second in slugging percentage (.599) and third in doubles (25). A hitter that torched Carolina League pitching in June, Burgess hit .371 over 23 contests during the season’s third month. During that time, he hit nine homers, three triples, seven doubles and drove in 22. The nine longballs was the most by a Carolina League player and tied for the fourth-most by a minor leaguer in June. His 22 RBIs were also third-most by a CL player in the month of June.

TYSON FINALIST FOR HALL OF FAME: Keys hitting coach Torre Tyson has been named a finalist for the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame on Monday by the organization’s advisory committee. The winningest manager in Charleston Riverdogs history (Yankees Low-A), Tyson put together a 232-186 record during his tenure with the Riverdogs from 2007-09. Currently, Tyson is in his second year with the Keys as hitting coach, after serving as the Yankees minor league defensive coordinator from 2011-12. Three individuals will be selected for enshrinement, with two being voted on by the fans and one being voted on by the committee. The three individuals will be inducted on August 15, prior to Charleston Riverdogs’ game against the Rome Braves. Notable members of the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame include Roberto Alomar, David Cone and Willie Randolph.

BUNDY BLURBS:On Friday, Dylan Bundy made his fourth rehab start since undergoing “Tommy John” surgery last June, and his first with the Keys. Limited to 75 pitches, the right-hander allowed three runs on four hits over 4.2 innings. He exited after allowing a sac-fly to Jose Martinez, and received a no-decision. It was the Oklahoma native’s first appearance in a Frederick uniform since August 8, 2012. Prior to joining the Keys on Thursday, Bundy made three rehab starts with Short-Season Aberdeen. Working five innings in each outing, the right-hander went 0-1 with a 0.60 ERA. In 15 innings, Bundy allowed only one run on 10 hits while he walked three and struck out 22. Opponents were hitting just .189 against him.

LONELY ISLAND: Since the start of the second-half, the Keys pitching staff has taken its lumps. Over the first 18 games of the second-half, Keys arms have posted a 6.46 ERA (153.1 IP/110ER) and allowed 191 hits during that time as well as 19 home runs. This year, Frederick arms have given up 59 home runs, the second-most longballs allowed by a CL pitching staff.

NAME THAT PUJOLS!: Luis Pujols becomes the 20th manager in Keys history, after spending 2013 as the skipper at Low-A Delmarva. He takes the reins from Ryan Minor, who went 61-78 in his lone season as Frederick’s head man. The cousin of Angels star, Albert Pujols, the 58-year-old has considerable experience as a player, manager and coach in the majors and minors. Since spending nine years as a big league catcher with Houston, Kansas City and Texas, Pujols has worked as a bench/first base coach for Montreal (1993-00) and San Francisco (2003-06), while he served as interim manager for the Detroit Tigers in 2002, after Phil Garner was fired six games into the season. He has also managed for Double-A affiliates in the Detroit and Houston systems.

PROSPECTING: This year’s Keys team does not lack for talent. Frederick’s Opening Day roster features five of Baltimore’s Top 30 prospects according to Baseball America. Shortstop Adrian Marin (12) highlights the list and is joined by right-handed pitchers Parker Bridwell (19), Branden Kline (20) and Mychal Givens (23). Glynn Davis (29) rounds out the group. Of the five players, only Givens (one game in 2010) and Davis played at the Advanced-A level prior to 2014.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Cody Kukuk makes his 12h start of the season and his third against Frederick. Rated the No. 21 prospect in the Red Sox system according to Baseball America, the lefty’s most recent start came last Wednesday against the Keys. Earning his first win since May 8, the southpaw gave up one unearned run and just two hits over five innings. He hit one, walked three and struck out six. It was his longest outing since May 20. A pitcher who has battled command issues, the three walks was a vast improvement over the seven he allowed on June 27. Still, he has walked 19 in his last 10 innings (four starts). Over 40.2 stanzas in the Carolina League, he has walked 40 and struck out 40, giving him the third-most free passes among CL pitchers. Promoted to Salem on May 3 from Low-A Greensville, Kukuk went 3-0 with a 1.88 ERA over five games with the Drive. Dominant over 24 innings, he handed out 18 hits and struck out 29. Opponents batted just .217 against him, though he did walk 12. Kukuk spent all of 2013 at Greensville, where he went 4-13 with a 4.63 ERA over 26 games (24 starts). In 107 innings, the lefty walked 81, but gave up only 77 hits, struck out 113 and held opponents to a .197 batting average. His first true professional season, Kukuk threw only 10 innings in 2012 following an arrest for a suspicion of DUI. The charges were later dismissed. A pitcher that has drawn physical comparisons to Boston starter Jon Lester, Kukuk was selected by the Red Sox in the seventh round of the 2011 draft out of Lawrence Free State High School. As a senior, he went 7-1 with a 2.89 ERA and was named a Louisville Slugger All-American. Originally committed to play at the University of Kansas, he was swayed by an $800,000 signing bonus. Kukuk throws a low-90s fastball that can reach the mid-90s, a slider and a changeup.

 

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