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It’s STEM Day at Nymeo Field!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016 · Game #58 · Home Game #31

Frederick Keys (27-30) vs. Carolina Mudcats (22-33)

RHP Lucas Long (2-4, 4.03) vs. RHP Max Povse (3-3, 2.98)

                                                                                                                                                              

ODOM TRIGGERS DECISIVE FOURTH: The Carolina Mudcats scored eight times in the fourth inning to post a lopsided 11-3 victory over the Frederick Keys on Monday night at Nymeo Field. Joe Odom led the charge, going 3-for-5 with five RBIs and two home runs, both of which came in the same inning. After the two sides exchanged runs, the visitors sent 12 men to bat in the fourth to take control for good. Odom opened the inning with a solo homer off Trevor Belicek, while later in the frame, Tanner Murphy slugged a three-run shot, before an RBI two-bagger by Ryan Gebhardt and a second three-run blast by Odom made it a 9-1 affair. Belicek suffered the loss, giving up six runs (five earned) in 3.2 innings. Matt Withrow picked up the win for the Muddies, tossing five innings and allowing two runs (one earned).

PITCHING TRIES TO GET BACK ON TRACK: Following an outstanding May, where Keys pitching led the circuit in ERA (2.68), the pitching staff has registered a 6.05 ERA in their first seven June contests. Most of the onus is on the starting pitching which has given up 29 earned runs in 32.2 innings (7.99 ERA). That figured has jumped over the last two games, as Mitch Horacek and Trevor Belicek have combined to surrender 11 earned runs in 8.2 stanzas.

SPEAK SOFTLY BUT CARRY A BIG STICK: Wynston Sawyer turned in the first multi-homer game of his career on Monday night, slugging a solo homer off Matt Withrow in the second, before adding a solo blast off Zack Bird in the sixth. Finishing the game 2-for-4, the two knocks were his first hits of the homestand, and ended an 0-for-14 stretch at the plate (dating back to May 29). One of the Keys top offensive contributors in May, Sawyer led all Carolina Leaguers in on-base percentage last month in May and finished with the fourth-highest figure in the MiLB during that time.

GRIMES AND RODRIGUEZ SWEEP O’S MILB HONORS: On Monday, Matthew Grimes and Aderlin Rodriguez were named the Orioles Minor League Pitcher and Player of the Month for May. Grimes went 5-1 with a 1.12 ERA across six May games. Logging 40.1 innings, the righty allowed only five earned runs and 28 hits. Among qualifiers, Grimes’ five wins were tied for the most in the MiLB while he was third in innings pitched. He also led the Carolina League in ERA and WHIP (0.84). Rodriguez batted .333 with five home runs, 18 RBIs to go with 11 runs scored. He led all CL players in slugging (.583) while he tied for the league lead in home runs and total bases (56) and was second in hitting and OPS (.968).

BREAKFAST AND BASEBALL: Tuesday marks the fifth time this year that the Keys have played a morning baseball game, while it is the third time breakfast and baseball has taken place at Nymeo Field in 2016. In morning tilts this year, the orange and black are 2-2, while the club is 1-1 in morning home games. Frederick’s last morning game came on May 18 at Wilmington, a game ending in a 3-2 Blue Rocks win.

NOT A BAD NIGHT: Following a five-game stretch where he was 2-for-19 at the plate, Jay Gonzalez has got back on track the last five days. During that time he is batting .421 (8-for-19) with seven runs scored and seven RBIs. The Orlando native has at least one hit and one RBI in his last five contests. The highlight of this strong stretch came on Saturday, when Gonzalez delivered a walk-off single in the 11th inning to give the Keys their first extra-inning win (that night he went 3-for-4 with an RBI, two runs scored, two stolen bases and two walks). Following a stolen base on Monday, Gonzalez now ranks third in all of Minor League Baseball in swipes, trailing only Salem’s Yoan Moncada and Jacksonville’s Yefri Perez (both have 33).

ROSTER MOVEMENT: Right before Sunday’s game against the Carolina, Keys reliever David Richardson was promoted to the Double-A Bowie Baysox. It was his first call-up to the Eastern League while he became the seventh Frederick player to receive a promotion in 2016. Richardson made his debut on Sunday, pitching the second of a doubleheader against Akron. Receiving a no-decision, the Tampa righty gave up five runs on four hits in three innings. In nine games (two starts) with the Keys he was 2-1 with a 3.63 ERA. In a corresponding move on Monday, the Keys received right-hander Mike Burke from Aberdeen. In his Frederick debut last night, he pitched two scoreless innings. The former University of Buffalo product spent all of 2015 with Low-A Delmarva going 2-2 with a 3.36 ERA in 28 games (one start).

A TELL-TALE SIGN: A major barometer for success this year has been whether or not the Keys have out-hit their opponent. In games where Frederick holds the upper hand in the hit column, Keith Bodie’s team is 21-3. When the opponent outhits the Keys though, the team is 1-24.

ODDS AND ENDS: With Frederick’s loss on Monday and a win by Lynchburg, Frederick’s first-half elimination number was sliced down to four. Wilmington and Winston-Salem are the only two CL teams that have been knocked out of playoff contention so far. T.J. Olesczuk recorded two hits on Monday, his third two-hit game of the year. Jonah Heim tied his season-high for hits on Saturday (three) and is 5-for-9 in his last two games after going hitless in his previous 23 at-bats. Heim also leads all CL catchers in caught stealing percentage (35.6%). No other catcher is above 31.3%.

TODAY’S STARTING PITCHER: Right-hander Max Povse makes his 11th start of the year on Tuesday and his second against Frederick. His most recent start came last Thursday at Winston-Salem. Tagged with the loss, the righty allowed five runs (four earned) on nine hits in five innings. He walked two and struck out four. Pitching against the Keys on May 27, he received a no-decision, allowing one run over five innings while striking out 10. Currently, Povse ranks seventh in the CL in ERA (2.98) is second in strikeouts (61) and fifth among starters in highest SO/9IP ratio (9.58). Opponents are hitting just .244 against him, while he has allowed three runs or less in every start but two. Povse split 2015 between Low-A Rome and Carolina, combining to go 5-5 with a 4.15 ERA. He was promoted to the Mudcats on June 25. In five starts with Carolina he struggled, going 1-3 with a 9.33 ERA before going on the DL with a right shoulder strain on July 21. He missed the rest of the year. A third round pick by Atlanta in 2014 out of UNC-Greensboro, Povse is from Cary, NC (40 minutes from outside Zebulon).

Tonight’s Notes Have Arrived!

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Monday, June 6, 2016 · Game #57 · Home Game #30

Frederick Keys (27-29) vs. Carolina Mudcats (21-33)

LHP Trevor Belicek (0-1, 10.80) vs. RHP Matt Withrow (3-4, 3.67)

                                                                                                                                                              

MUDCATS SCORE RAIN-SHORTENED WIN: The Frederick Keys and Carolina Mudcats combined on three multi-run innings in the opening three stanzas, but the Muddies came out on top in a 6-4 rain-shortened win on Sunday afternoon at Nymeo Field. Carolina grabbed a 6-0 lead after the first three innings. A Joseph Odom homer off Mitch Horacek gave the visitors the game’s first run. In the second, Carolina plated three more on a passed ball and RBI singles by Ryan Gebhardt and Keith Curcio, while a wild pitch and an RBI bounce out by Sal Giardina completed the Muddies scoring. Frederick answered with the next four runs. Three came in the third on a Jay Gonzalez RBI double and a two-run single by Steve Wilkerson. A sac-fly by Josh Hart made it a one-run game in the fourth, but after a hard lineout-double play by Conor Bierfeldt to end the fifth, the rains came.

CALLED EARLY: The night after playing their longest game in terms of innings on the season, the Keys played their shortest game both in regards to innings and time. The five inning contest marked the first non-doubleheader game that failed to go a regulation nine innings in 2016, while it was the first time a regulation game had been called early due to rain in nearly a year (June 4, 2015 at Wilmington). With the game lasting just five innings, it was no surprise Sunday’s contest was the shortest by time this season, as the five innings were played in one hour and 32 minutes (previous low was one hour and 49 minutes versus Potomac on May 13).

GRIMES AND RODRIGUEZ SWEEP O’S MILB HONORS: On Monday, Matthew Grimes and Aderlin Rodriguez were named the Orioles Minor League Pitcher and Player of the Month for May. Grimes went 5-1 with a 1.12 ERA across six May games. Logging 40.1 innings, the righty allowed only five earned runs and 28 hits. Among qualifiers, Grimes’ five wins were tied for the most in the MiLB while he was third in innings pitched. He also led the Carolina League in ERA and WHIP (0.84). Rodriguez batted .333 with five home runs, 18 RBIs to go with 11 runs scored. He led all CL players in slugging (.583) while he tied for the league lead in home runs and total bases (56) and was second in hitting and OPS (.968).

PITCHING TRIES TO GET BACK ON TRACK: Following an outstanding May, where Keys pitching led the circuit in ERA (2.68), the pitching staff has registered a 5.51 ERA in its first six contests. Most of the onus is on the starting pitching which has given up 24 runs in 29 innings (7.45 ERA). That figured jumped on Sunday, as Mitch Horacek surrendered six runs over five innings. Despite a blowing a four-run lead on Saturday night, Keys relievers have pitched to a 2.70 ERA (20 IP/6ER).

NOT A BAD NIGHT: Following a five-game stretch where he was 2-for-19 at the plate, Jay Gonzalez has got back on track the last four days. On Sunday, the Orlando native was 1-for-3 with an RBI double and a run scored the night after he delivered a walk-off single in the 11th inning (that night he went 3-for-4 with an RBI, two runs scored, two stolen bases and two walks). In his last four games, Gonzalez is hitting .467 (7-for-15) with seven runs scored and six RBIs. He has an RBI and a run scored in each of those games. Following a pair of stolen bases Saturday, Gonzalez now ranks third in all of Minor League Baseball in swipes, trailing only Salem’s Yoan Moncada and Jacksonville’s Yefri Perez (both have 33).

 LIGHTS, CAM, ACTION: Following a disappointing May where he hit only .200 in 21 games, Cam Kneeland has gotten it back on track. In five June contests, Kneeland is hitting .353 (6-for-17) with two homers, seven RBIs, three doubles and four runs scored. On Friday and Saturday he recorded three RBIs apiece, while his seven RBIs this month in five games equals his total May output. Kneeland has homered in two of the last three days, and is tied for fourth in the league with 15 doubles.

HERE COME THE BATS: In a rain-shortened five innings on Sunday, the Keys bats continued to perform well, as the orange and black recorded four runs on eight hits in five innings. The Keys have tallied double-digit hits in two of the last three days, and are batting .347 over the last three ballgames (34-for-98). Over the last three days, the Keys have scored 24 runs after posting only 16 in their previous seven games (2.3 run average). In two of the three games the Keys have also outhit their opponents, a strong barometer for success this year. When finishing with more hits than their opponent, the Keys are 21-3 as opposed to going 1-23, when their opponent holds the upper hand.

ODDS AND ENDS: David Richardson was promoted to Double-A on Sunday and made his Eastern League debut. Starting game two of a doubleheader against Akron, he allowed five runs on three hits in four innings. Jonah Heim tied his season-high for hits on Saturday (three) and is 5-for-9 in his last two games after going hitless in his previous 23 at-bats. Frederick has won three of its last four one-run games. Frederick’s bullpen saw its scoreless innings streak snapped at 22.1 innings in game one of Thursday’s doubleheader (it dated back to the fourth inning of last Thursday’s game at Winston-Salem).

TODAY’S STARTING PITCHER: Right-hander Matt Withrow makes his 10th start of the year on Monday and his first against the Keys. The right-hander’s most recent outing came last Wednesday at Winston-Salem. Pitching five shutout innings, the right-hander scattered five hits, walked two and struck out seven. Winner of his last two starts, Withrow has given up just two runs on seven hits in his last 11 innings. Following a strong April where he pitched to a 0.79 ERA in three games, Withrow posted a 5.68 mark in five May tilts. Selected by Atlanta in the sixth round of the 2015 draft out of Texas Tech, Withrow was the third of seven consecutive college pitchers drafted by the Braves in 2015 between rounds four and 10. He debuted at Rookie-Danville last season, going 0-4 with a 3.56 ERA in 13 games. Opponents hit .257 against him. Not the only Braves player in his family, Withrow’s brother, Chris, is a member of the Atlanta bullpen. Additionally, Withrow’s dad, Mike was drafted in the seventh round of the 1981 draft by the White Six and spent parts of three years in the Chicago farm system. Withrow throws a fastball, a slider and a changeup.

Keys Aim for Third Consecutive Win

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

After the Keys won in a 5-4 extra inning thriller last night, we’re back at it again this afternoon! Jay Gonzalez played hero yesterday, driving in the winning run in the 11th inning. He reached base five times last night with three hits and two walks. The University of Mount Olive product also swiped two bags, making it an even 30 on the year.

Southpaw Mitch Horacek will take the mound for his 11th start of the year as he’ll be opposed by Mudcats starter Raymar Navarro.

We cap off Family Fitness Weekend today with a fun challenge for our two broadcasters. Geoff Arnold and Doug Raftery will be calling the game from the first base concourse while pedaling exercise bikes. The two have been raising money for Boys & Girls Club of Frederick County. Get in your donations for #TeamGeoff here and #TeamDoug here.

To catch their the broadcast, you can tune in on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com or the TuneIn Radio App.

Tonight’s notes are below.

Shake Your Keys!

Ethan

GONZALEZ LIFTS KEYS TO WALK-OFF WIN: Jay Gonzalez delivered an RBI walk-off single to right in the bottom of the 11th to give the Frederick Keys a 5-4 win over the Carolina Mudcats on Saturday night at Nymeo Field. It was the club’s second walk-off win of the year, while the 11th inning magic came on the heels of a rough ninth inning, where the Keys saw a 4-0 lead slip away. Facing Carlos Salazar in the 11th, Jonah Heim started things off with a single to right. He was replaced by pinch-runner Anthony Caronia, who moved to second after Salazar mishandled a bunt back to the mound. Erick Salcedo followed with a bunt single up the third base line to load things up for Gonzalez, who split the right-center gap.

EVERYONE GOES HOME HAPPY: In addition to the Keys walk-off win on Saturday, the Keys defeated the Potomac Nationals via walk-off on May 23. The first game of a doubleheader, Jonah Heim delivered the decisive blow in that contest with a single down the leftfield line. The series opener against the Muddies also gave the Keys their first extra-inning win of the year. Entering the night 0-2 in games going past regulation this year (through their first 54 contests) it was the club’s first win in an extra-inning affair since last July 25 against Winston-Salem (the Keys won 2-1 on a Chance Sisco walk-off single). The Keys second extra-inning game of the week (they lost 6-5 to Potomac in eight innings in game one of Thursday’s twinbill) Saturday’s contest was also the team’s longest game in terms of innings this year.

NOT A BAD NIGHT: The walk-off single, capped off a fantastic Saturday for Jay Gonzalez, who went 3-for-4 with an RBI, two runs scored, two stolen bases and two walks. It was the Floridian’s third three-hit game of the year and first since May 15. Following a five-game stretch where he was 2-for-19, Gonzalez is 5-for-9 in his last two games with two RBIs. He has five runs scored as well, after he scored only two runs in his previous 14 games. On the basepaths, the former Mount Olive College product racked up his seventh multi-steal game of the year, giving him 30 in 34 attempts. He now ranks third in all of Minor League Baseball, trailing only Salem’s Yoan Moncada and Jacksonville’s Yefri Perez (both have 33).

MY, MY, MATTHEW: Matthew Grimes was outstanding yet again for the Keys, tossing seven innings of three-hit baseball in a no-decision. He struck out a season-high eight and did not walk a batter. Although a no-decision ended his career-best four-game win streak, Grimes extended his streak of scoreless innings to 28 (he last gave up a run in the first inning of his May 16 start at Wilmington). Going back even farther, the former Georgia Tech product has allowed just one earned run in his last 35.2 innings. That has cut his ERA to 1.08, the second-best mark in Advanced-A and the sixth-best mark in Minor League Baseball.

LIGHTS, CAM, ACTION: Following a disappointing May where he hit only .200 in 21 games, Cam Kneeland has gotten it back on track. Tying his season-high with three RBIs on Saturday, he went 2-for-5 with a double. In four June contests, Kneeland is hitting .357 (5-for-14) with two homers, seven RBIs, two doubles and four runs scored. The seven RBIs equaled his total May output. Kneeland has homered in two of the last three days, and is just outside the top five in the CL in two-baggers (he has 14 this year).

HERE COME THE BATS: For the second night in-a-row, the Keys reached double-digits in hits (12) while four different players posted multi-hit games. Over the last two nights, the Keys have scored 20 runs after posting only 16 in their previous seven games (2.3 run average). Additionally in both nights, the Keys have outhit their opposition, a statistic that has been a very strong barometer of the club’s success. When finishing with more hits than their opponent, the Keys are 21-3 as opposed to going 1-22, when their opponent holds the upper hand.

HERE COME THE BATS: For the second night in-a-row, the Keys reached double-digits in hits (12) while four different players posted multi-hit games. Over the last two nights, the Keys have scored 20 runs after posting only 16 in their previous seven games (2.3 run average). Additionally in both nights, the Keys have outhit their opposition, a statistic that has been a very strong barometer of the club’s success. When finishing with more hits than their opponent, the Keys are 21-3 as opposed to going 1-22, when their opponent holds the upper hand.

GRIMES AND SAWYER SWEEP WEEKLY AWARDS: On Tuesday, Wynston Sawyer and Matthew Grimes were named the Carolina League Player and Pitcher of the Week respectively for May 23-29. It marked the first time two Keys have garnered both weekly accolades since June 6-13, 2011, when Steve Bumbry (player) and Nick Haughian (pitcher) won both.

ODDS AND ENDS: Jonah Heim tied his season-high for hits on Saturday (three) and is 5-for-9 in his last two games after going hitless in his previous 23 at-bats. Frederick has won three of its last four one-run games. Frederick’s bullpen saw its scoreless innings streak snapped at 22.1 innings in game one of Thursday’s doubleheader (it dated back to the fourth inning of last Thursday’s game at Winston-Salem). Saturday’s crowd of 7,519 was the club’s largest of the season, and the most well attended of any of the 55 the team has played this year. On Sunday, Keys broadcasters Geoff Arnold and Doug Raftery will broadcast the team’s game on exercise bikes, in support of the Boys and Girls Club of Frederick County.

TODAY’S STARTING PITCHER: Right-hander Raymar Navarro makes his 12th appearance of the season and second start on Sunday. His most recent outing came on Monday against the Keys at Five County Stadium. Working a career-high five innings, he allowed one run on three hits. He struck out four and did not walk a batter. After pitching to a 5.40 ERA in April, the righty went 2-0 with a 3.31 mark in May. Navarro played four seasons in the top Cuban league, Serie Nacional, and posted an 18-30 record and 3.90 ERA in 337.1 innings with Cachorros de Holgui. His best season was his last in 2013, as he tossed a 2.70 ERA. According to reports, Navarro left Cuba in late 2013 and was at sea for two days before arriving to the Dominican Republic, where he was scouted. He became well-known after he threw a no-hitter in 2012 against Dodger signee Pablo Millan Fernandez. The Braves signed him on August 5, 2015. He now resides in Port Au Prince, Haiti

On Come the Muddies!

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

It seems as if Keyote got an early birthday present last night, as the Keys scored a season-high 15 runs in a route of the Potomac Nationals! The Keys smacked three home runs — including a grand slam from Aderlin Rodriguez — and infielder Steve Wilkerson was just a triple short of the cycle.

Tonight, we open up a four-game set against the Carolina Mudcats as Matthew Grimes, arguably the best starter so far in the Carolina League, takes the bump for Frederick. The Georgia Tech product is tied for first with the best record in the league and also sports the second-best ERA. He’ll be opposed by right-hander Enderson Franco.

We’ll also be celebrating Keyote’s birthday tonight! He’ll be joined by some of his mascot friends from around the area and also the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. We’re also having a pizza part and will be having a fireworks show after the game! Get your tickets here.

Tonight’s notes are below.

Shake Your Keys!

Ethan

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Saturday, June 4, 2016 · Game #55 · Home Game #28

Frederick Keys (26-28) vs. Carolina Mudcats (21-31)

RHP Matthew Grimes (7-2, 1.21) vs. RHP Enderson Franco (3-3, 5.02)

                                                                                                                                                          

KEYS ROUT NATIONALS TO AVOID SWEEP: The Frederick Keys exploded for a season-high 15 runs and tallied 14 hits to cruise past the Potomac Nationals 15-3 on Friday night at Nymeo Field. Plating 13 unanswered runs, the club avoided its second four game sweep of the season and snapped a four-game losing streak. Cam Kneeland got the Keys on the board in the first with a two-run homer, before the Nationals posted three in the second. In the bottom of the inning though, the Keys grabbed the lead for good. After a bases loaded walk forced in a run, Aderlin Rodriguez hit a grand slam to right to make it a 7-3 affair. Frederick turned in three additional multi-run innings to close out its night at the plate. On the mound, Franderlin Romero won his Nymeo Field debut, delivering six innings of three-run baseball.

OH WHAT A NIGHT: The 15 runs posted by the Keys were four more than their previous season-high of 11 set on May 2 at Wilmington. Additionally, the 15-run output was the largest by the club since defeating the Lynchburg Hillcats 17-3 on July 5 at City Stadium (in that game Mike Yastrzemski hit for the cycle). In Friday’s contest, six Keys tallied multi-hit games, while six finished with at least one RBI (Aderlin Rodriguez led the way with five thanks to a grand slam).

OFFENSIVE COMPARISONS: Frederick’s 15 runs come on the heels of a seven-game stretch where the offense scored only 16 TOTAL runs and averaged just 2.3 runs per game. Meanwhile, the Keys eclipsed their total number of hits with runners in scoring position over the previous week on Friday. Going 7-for-13 on the game, the orange and black were a collective 6-for-35 (.171) with runners in scoring position in the seven previous contests.

WILKERSON GETS A LIFT: Following a challenging 15 game stretch where he was hitting only .157 (9-for-57), Steve Wilkerson busted out, going 3-for-3 with two RBIs and three runs scored. He finished a home run short of the cycle. The three-hits for the former Clemson Tiger equaled a season-high, while it was his first multi-hit game since May 14 against Myrtle Beach. In his first three June games, Wilkerson is batting .364 (4-for-11).

BACK TO QUALITY: Following four straight games where a Keys starter had failed to complete the fifth inning (one was a Yovani Gallardo MLB rehab where he was scheduled to throw only 60 pitches) the club picked up a quality start from Franderlin Romero on Friday. Tossing six innings of three-run baseball, it was Romero’s second quality outing in as many starts for the Keys. It was the 19th quality outing (six innings or more and three earned runs or less) by the pitching staff this year and blows away the seven quality starts the team had in the entire first-half of 2015. Matthew Grimes, the Keys starter for Saturday, leads the staff with six quality appearances.

MAY DON’T GO AWAY!: The Keys won 10 of their last 14 May games (including five of the last seven) to end the month with an 18-9 record. That was the top mark in the Carolina League and was the club’s best month since July 2011, when they posted a 20-8 record thanks in part to a 2.44 staff ERA. Pitching was Frederick’s formula to success this time as well, as the Keys lead the circuit with a 2.68 mark. Overall, eight Keys staff members finished with ERAs below two. At the plate, Frederick hit .242 but was led by Aderlin Rodriguez (.333), Erick Salcedo (.321) and Wynston Sawyer (.316). Rodriguez finished second in the CL in hitting (trailing only Carolina’s Joey Meneses who ended at .344).  Meanwhile, Sawyer led all CL players in on-base percentage (.475) and finished second with 24 walks. Those figures were also fourth and second in the MiLB respectively.  

GRIMES AND SAWYER SWEEP WEEKLY AWARDS: On Tuesday, Wynston Sawyer and Matthew Grimes were named the Carolina League Player and Pitcher of the Week respectively for May 23-29. It marked the first time two Keys have garnered both weekly accolades since June 6-13, 2011, when Steve Bumbry (player) and Nick Haughian (pitcher) won both. In eight games, Sawyer batted .385 with two homers, one double, one triple and five RBIs. Grimes earned his second CL Pitcher of the Week honor, after not allowing any runs over two starts (spanning 15 innings). His best performance of the year came on Sunday when he tossed eight shutout innings of two-hit baseball.

ODDS AND ENDS: Jonah Heim ended an 0-for-23 slide at the plate on Friday with a single in the second inning. Frederick’s bullpen saw its scoreless innings streak snapped at 22.1 innings in game one of Thursday’s doubleheader (it dated back to the fourth inning of last Thursday’s game at Winston-Salem). The Keys have been outhit in four straight games, while the club is just 1-22 when being outhit by the opposition. Jay Gonzalez hit his first professional home run on Thursday in game one of the doubleheader after going 837 pro at-bats without one. Luis Gonzalez tallied a 0.60 ERA in six May contests (15 IP/1ER).

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Enderson Franco makes his 11th start of the season and his second start against the Keys. His most recent outing came against the orange and black last Sunday at Five County Stadium. Tagged with the loss, the Venezuelan allowed two runs (one earned) on five hits in six innings. He tied his season-high with seven strikeouts and did not walk a batter. Coming off a May where he went 1-2 with a 3.30 ERA in five games, Franco’s 5.02 ERA can be traced back to a rough professional debut against Salem where he allowed nine runs on 12 hits in two innings. If you subtract that first start, his ERA would be 3.46. Franco was selected in the minor league Rule 5 Phase by the Atlanta Braves this offseason. Originally signed in 2009 by Houston, Franco was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays in the Rule 5 draft in 2013, and then was acquired by the Marlins in July 2013 for an international bonus pool slot. This is Franco’s first year at Advanced-A, as he spent last year with Low-A Bowling Green (Rays) and Greensboro (Marlins), making a career-high 25 starts between the two with a 6-12 record and 6.29 ERA. The righty’s hometown of Araco, VZ is also the same home as former major leaguer Miguel Cairo, and current brothers Orlando (Triple-A, Brewers) and Oswaldo (MLB, Twins) Arcia. He throws a fastball, slider, and changeup.

The Keys Try and Avoid the Four-Game Sweep

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

It was a looooooooooooooong evening of baseball yesterday. After 15 innings of baseball were complete, the Keys were on the losing end of a doubleheader sweep at the hands of the Potomac Nationals. In game one, Jay Gonzalez smashed his first professional home run to tie the game up in the seventh inning, but the Nats were victorious in extras.

Tonight, we play the series finale against Potomac as Franderlin Romero will be making his first home appearance for the Keys. He was acquired from the Cincinnati Reds organization just a few weeks ago. In his last three starts, he has gone six inning and allowed two or less runs.

We’ll also be kicking off Family Fitness Weekend tonight! The first 1,000 kids will receive a t-shirt and those who participated in our Family Fitness Program will participate in a pre-game parade. Also, after the game we’ll have FIREWORKS! Get your tickets here.

Tonight’s notes are below.

Shake Your Keys!

Ethan

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Friday, June 3, 2016 · Game #54 · Home Game #27

Frederick Keys (25-28) vs. Potomac Nationals (29-22)

RHP Franderlin Romero (1-0, 1.50) vs. RHP Wirkin Estevez (0-3, 5.02)

                                                                                                                                                               NATIONALS SWEEP DOUBLEHEADER: The Potomac Nationals earned a doubleheader sweep of the Frederick Keys on Thursday at Nymeo Field at Harry Grove Stadium. In game one, the P-Nats overcame a game-tying home run by Jay Gonzalez to post a 6-5 victory, while a five-run fifth helped the Nationals roll to a 9-2 win in the nightcap. Trailing 5-2 in the bottom of the seventh, the Keys put two on base after Jonah Heim reached on an error and Anthony Caronia walked. That sent up Gonzalez who cleared the rightfield wall to make it 5-5. However the Nationals answered in the eighth, as a David Masters double drove in Drew Ward. Masters also provided the decisive blow in game two, with a three-run homer off Lucas Long. That capped off a big Nationals inning, as Potomac scored eight of their nine runs between the fifth and sixth stanzas.

GALLARDO MAKES REHAB START: Orioles starting pitcher, Yovani Gallardo started game one of the doubleheader after being put on the disabled list on April 23 with right shoulder biceps tendinitis. Pitching three innings, the righty allowed three runs on seven hits while walking two and striking out four. He threw just under 60 pitches. Gallardo became the fourth big leaguer to join the Keys this year (Kevin Gausman and former Orioles Brian Matusz and Jimmy Paredes were the others).  In four starts with the Orioles this year Gallardo is 1-1 with a 7.00 ERA.

BACKS AGAINST THE WALL: On Friday, the Keys try to avoid equaling their longest losing streak of the season. Losers of their last four contests, the Keys previously dropped five in-a-row from April 19-23. Additionally, the club hopes to avoid being swept for the second time this season. Frederick was also broomed in a four-game set by the Lynchburg Hillcats from April 14-17 (the club’s first home series of the year. Since that time, the orange and black have earned three sweeps of their own (two against Wilmington and one against Winston-Salem).

ANALYZING THE STRUGGLES: Following a stretch where the Keys won six of seven contests, the orange and black have dropped five of their last seven tilts. The offense is at the center of these struggles, as the Keys have averaged just 2.3 runs per game over the week-long stretch (and have scored two runs or less in five of those games). As a club the Keys are batting .215 during that time (46-for-214) and are hitting only .171 with runners in scoring position (6-for-35). On the mound, the Keys have pitched to a 4.10 ERA in that seven game window, but that figure rises to 7.50 (24IP/20ER) if you scan the first three games of this month.

REYES BUSTS OUT: In spite of some of the Keys struggles at the plate, Jomar Reyes has picked it up in the last few games.  Over the three game series, the 19-year-old is 6-for-10 with an RBI. Half of those came on Wednesday, when Reyes finished 3-for-3  with an RBI (his team had just four hits). The three hits were a season-high for Reyes, who was just 4-for-34 in his previous 10 games with 13 strikeouts (during which time his average dropped to a season-worst .207).

MAY DON’T GO AWAY!: The Keys won 10 of their last 14 May games (including five of the last seven) to end the month with an 18-9 record. That was the top mark in the Carolina League and was the club’s best month since July 2011, when they posted a 20-8 record thanks in part to a 2.44 staff ERA. Pitching was Frederick’s formula to success this time as well, as the Keys lead the circuit with a 2.68 mark. Overall, eight Keys staff members finished with ERAs below two. At the plate, Frederick hit .242 but was led by Aderlin Rodriguez (.333), Erick Salcedo (.321) and Wynston Sawyer (.316). Rodriguez finished second in the CL in hitting (trailing only Carolina’s Joey Meneses who ended at .344).  Meanwhile, Sawyer led all CL players in on-base percentage (.475) and finished second with 24 walks. Those figures were also fourth and second in the MiLB respectively.  

GRIMES AND SAWYER SWEEP WEEKLY AWARDS: On Tuesday, Wynston Sawyer and Matthew Grimes were named the Carolina League Player and Pitcher of the Week respectively for May 23-29. It marked the first time two Keys have garnered both weekly accolades since June 6-13, 2011, when Steve Bumbry (player) and Nick Haughian (pitcher) won both. In eight games, Sawyer batted .385 with two homers, one double, one triple and five RBIs. Grimes earned his second CL Pitcher of the Week honor, after not allowing any runs over two starts (spanning 15 innings). His best performance of the year came on Sunday when he tossed eight shutout innings of two-hit baseball.

SALCEDO’S HIT STREAK COMES TO AN END: Erick Salcedo saw his 14-game hitting streak end on Monday as he went 0-for-3. The sixth-longest mark in the CL this year, Salcedo batted .422 (19-for-45) with a homer, six RBIs and five runs scored. The highlight of the streak came nearly two weeks ago, when Salcedo hit his first professional homer (he had played 428 games and gone 1,348 at-bats without one). The 14-game stretch was the longest by a Frederick player since August of 2013 when Travis Adair hit in 18 consecutive contests.

ODDS AND ENDS: Frederick’s bullpen saw its scoreless innings streak snapped at 22.1 innings on game one on Thursday (it dated back to the fourth inning of last Thursday’s game at Winston-Salem). The Keys have been outhit in four straight games, while the club is just 1-22 when being outhit by the opposition. Jonah Heim has not recorded a hit in his last six games and is hitless in his last 23 at-bats (his last hit came last Wednesday at Winston-Salem).  Luis Gonzalez tallied a 0.60 ERA in six May contests (15 IP/1ER).

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER:  Right-hander Wirkin Estevez makes his 10th start of the season on Friday and his second against the Keys. His last outing came last Thursday against Salem, where he pitched three innings and gave up four runs. Estevez has not worked past the fifth in 2016. The right-hander did not pitch for a regular season team in 2015 due to Tommy John surgery but made four appearances for Salt River in the Arizona Fall League. There he allowed six runs on five hits in four innings (13.50 ERA). It marked the second time that the righty had undergone Tommy John surgery, as he also missed the 2013 season for the same reason. Prior to this year, Estevez’s previous full season came in 2014 with Low-A Hagerstown when he was 0-2 with a 9.37 ERA in just five games. Estevez was signed by the Nationals as an international free agent in 2010.

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

We know you love going to the ballpark, but it’s always upsetting to leave your dog at home for the evening. Well, take them with you! Tonight is ‘Bark in the Park’ as all dogs are welcome inside.

You and your furry friend are in for a treat (not a dog treat) as Orioles starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo will be making his major league rehab assignment and will start game one for the Keys.

Grab your tickets here for tonight’s doubleheader. Game one will start at 5 pm and game will start 30 minutes following the conclusion of the first contest.

Tonight’s notes are below

Shake Your Keys!

Ethan

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Thursday, June 2, 2016 · Game #52 · Home Game #25

Frederick Keys (25-26) vs. Potomac Nationals (27-22)

G1: RHP Yovani Gallardo (0-0, 6.00) vs. RHP Greg Ross (2-2, 1.08)

VALDEZ SHUTS DOWN KEYS: Phillips Valdez turned in seven masterful innings, while the Potomac Nationals scored all six of their runs in the first three innings to defeat the Frederick Keys 6-1 on Wednesday night at Nymeo Field. On game, the orange and black were held to four hits, while they committed three errors. After a sac-fly by Jose Marmolejos in the first, the P-Nats plated three more in the second. A groundout by Dale Carey netted the first run, while Andrew Stevenson doubled home a pair to make it 4-0. Alec Keller completed the scoring with a two-run double one frame later. That was plenty for Valdez, who worked seven innings of one-run baseball. Trevor Belicek took the loss for Frederick, giving up six runs in 3.2 innings.

REYES BUSTS OUT: Offensively, the Keys lone bright spot on Wednesday was Jomar Reyes. Finishing with three of the team’s four hits, the 19-year-old went 3-for-3 and also had the team’s only RBI. The three hits were a season-high for Reyes, who was just 4-for-34 in his previous 10 games with 13 strikeouts (during which time his average dropped to a season-worst .207). The three hits were one shy of a career-high, while it was his first three-hit effort since last August 4 against Hickory.

LITTLE HELP!: Defensively the Keys struggled in the series opener against the P-Nats committing three errors, one-shy of a season-worst (the Keys made four errors on April 19 against Wilmington). It was the most errors the Keys had made since May 14, when the club committed three in an 11-3 loss to Myrtle Beach. Defensively, the Keys are tied for fifth in the circuit in fielding percentage (.974) while the club’s 50 errors are fourth-most in the league (Carolina leads the way with 63).

LET’S PLAY TWO!: For the second straight homestand, the Keys and P-Nats will play a doubleheader. The two sides played a pair last Monday at Nymeo Field, with the two clubs exchanging shutouts (Frederick took game one 1-0 and lost the back-end 2-0). This will mark the second twinbill the Keys have played this year, while the two sides will also play two on June 11 at Pfitzner Stadium. Potomac has the top doubleheader record in the league (5-1) and has gotten used to twinbills. Through their first 41 games, the P-Nats had eight postponements, one cancellation and one suspended game.

GALLARDO TO REHAB WITH KEYS: Orioles starting pitcher, Yovani Gallardo, is scheduled to pitch for the Keys in game one of Thursday’s doubleheader. On the disabled list since April 23 with right shoulder biceps tendinitis, Gallardo joins Kevin Gausman and former Orioles Brian Matusz and Jimmy Paredes as other big leaguers who have rehabbed with Frederick this year. In four starts with the Orioles this year he is 1-1 with a 7.00 ERA. Signed by Baltimore to a two-year contract in February, Gallardo pitched for Texas in 2015 where he went 13-11 with a 3.42 ERA in 32 starts. Thursday will be his first minor league appearance since April 14, 2008 when he was pitching for Milwaukee’s Triple-A affiliate in Nashville on an MLB rehab (he was recovering from surgery on a torn lateral meniscus in his left knee).

MAY DON’T GO AWAY!: The Keys won 10 of their last 14 May games (including five of the last seven) to end the month with an 18-9 record. That was the top mark in the Carolina League and was the club’s best month since July 2011, when they posted a 20-8 record thanks in part to a 2.44 staff ERA. Pitching was Frederick’s formula to success this time as well, as the Keys lead the circuit with a 2.68 mark. Overall, eight Keys staff members finished with ERAs below two. At the plate, Frederick hit .242 but was led by Aderlin Rodriguez (.333), Erick Salcedo (.321) and Wynston Sawyer (.316). Rodriguez finished second in the CL in hitting (trailing only Carolina’s Joey Meneses who ended at .344).  Meanwhile, Sawyer led all CL players in on-base percentage (.475) and finished second with 24 walks. Those figures were also fourth and second in the MiLB respectively.  

 STARTING PITCHERS SET TONE: In May, Keys starters turned in a 2.71 ERA (149.2 IP/45ER), while in 15 of Frederick’s 18 wins, the starting pitcher delivered a quality start (six innings or more and three earned runs or less). During the recent roadtrip, Keys starters posted four quality starts (Grimes twice, Long, and Romero), while Keys starters have turned in quality outings in six of the last 11 contests (and three of five). 

GRIMES AND SAWYER SWEEP WEEKLY AWARDS: On Tuesday, Wynston Sawyer and Matthew Grimes were named the Carolina League Player and Pitcher of the Week respectively for May 23-29. It marked the first time two Keys have garnered both weekly accolades since June 6-13, 2011, when Steve Bumbry (player) and Nick Haughian (pitcher) won both. In eight games, Sawyer batted .385 with two homers, one double, one triple and five RBIs. Grimes earned his second CL Pitcher of the Week honor, after not allowing any runs over two starts (spanning 15 innings). His best performance of the year came on Sunday when he tossed eight shutout innings of two-hit baseball.

SALCEDO’S HIT STREAK COMES TO AN END: Erick Salcedo saw his 14-game hitting streak end on Monday as he went 0-for-3. The sixth-longest mark in the CL this year, Salcedo batted .422 (19-for-45) with a homer, six RBIs and five runs scored. The highlight of the streak came nearly two weeks ago, when Salcedo hit his first professional homer (he had played 428 games and gone 1,348 at-bats without one). The 14-game stretch was the longest by a Frederick player since August of 2013 when Travis Adair hit in 18 consecutive contests.

ODDS AND ENDS: Frederick’s bullpen has not allowed a run in its last 20.1 innings (dating back to the fourth inning of last Thursday’s game at Winston-Salem). Since scoring four runs on Saturday, the Keys have four runs total in their last four games (the Keys are 5-16 when scoring three or less runs). Wynston Sawyer has a 21-game on-base streak this month, which is the second-longest by a Keys player this year (Steve Wilkerson reached in 22 straight from April 11-May 4, the third-longest by a CL player in 2016). Sawyer’s current streak is the longest active mark in the league. Luis Gonzalez tallied a 0.60 ERA in six May contests (15 IP/1ER).

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Greg Ross makes his 10th appearance and his fourth start in game one of Thursday’s twinbill. His most recent outing came last Friday against Winston-Salem, pitching a season-high seven innings, he did not allow a run and only five hits. Outstanding in each start this year, Ross is 2-0 as a starter and has not allowed a run in 16.1 innings. He has scattered 11 hits and is limiting opponents to a .196 average. This year both of Ross’ loses have come to the Keys (his most recent last Monday-in game on of the DH) In spring training with the Orioles, Ross was cut in camp and signed with Washington on April 21. Originally selected by Atlanta in the 18th round of the 2011 draft out of Frostburg State (1hr, 45 min from Frederick) Ross reached as high as Double-A with the Braves in 2014-15. With Mississippi in 2015 he was 7-9 with a 3.99 ERA in 25 games (23 starts).

 

The Keys are Back in Town!

Good Evening Keys Fans!

We’re baaaaaaaaaaaack! After a 5-2 road trip, the Keys are back in Frederick at Nymeo Field at Harry Grove Stadium. We’ll be facing Potomac Nationals in a four-game series, including a doubleheader on Thursday.

In addition to a great road trip, Frederick pitcher Matthew Grimes was named Carolina League pitcher of the week and catcher Wynston Sawyer was named Carolina League player of the week.

We’re jam-packed with great promotions during the seven-day homestand. Tonight is the first Belly Buster Picnic of the season, where you can get an all-you-can-eat buffet at the Flying Dog Picnic Pavilion for just $21. It’s also Celtic Night, featuring bagpipers and dancers before the game!

On Thursday, Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo will start the first game of the doubleheader at 5pm. It’s Bark in the Park day as well, so bring your four-legged friend to help you cheer on the Keys to victory.

Friday through Sunday, we’ll be celebrating Family Fitness Weekend!  On Sunday our radio broadcasters, Geoff Arnold and Doug Raftery, will be calling the game on the first base concourse while peddling exercise bikes. Geoff and Doug are also raising money for the Boys and Girls Club of Frederick. Donate with Geoff here and with Doug here.

We round out the home stand with Kids Eat Free and Mattress Warehouse Open Club on Monday, with Guaranteed Win Tuesday and STEM day on the final day before a seven-day road trip.

Buy your tickets online or at the box office to guarantee yourself a seat!

By The Numbers

Winning seven of their last ten games, the Frederick Keys are officially the hottest team in the Carolina League. With that, let’s checkout some of the numbers and players that have been playing a key role in the Keys’ success as of late.

1.21: Matthew Grimes’ miniscule 1.21 ERA is second-best in the league. Grimes has been arguably the best pitcher in the Carolina League, leading the league with seven wins. He has also allowed just 51 hits in 59.2 IP. His 9.50 fewest baserunners/9 is second lowest in the league.

9: Aderlin Rodriguez’s nine home runs are good for second in the Carolina League, just two behind Lynchburg’s Bobby Bradley. The 24 year old hit 24 home runs four years ago as a member of the New York Mets organization. Rodriguez signed with the Baltimore Orioles organization in January of 2016.

12.22: With 43 strikeouts in 31.2 innings pitched, Gonzalez has the best K/9 ratio among relievers in the Carolina League. In his last three appearances, Gonzalez has struck out 10 batters in 6.1 innings pitched.

20: Wynston Sawyer has reached base in 20 consecutive games this month, currently the longest active mark. It’s the second-longest such streak of the year by the Keys, as Steve Wilkerson previously reached base in 22 straight games.

27: Outfielder Jay Gonzalez has swiped 27 bases so far this season, four behind league leader and Red Sox prospect Yoan Moncada. The University of Mount Olive product stole 34 bases last year between Frederick and Delmarva.

33: The Keys are tied for second in the Carolina League with 33 home runs. In their last 11 games, Frederick has hit nine home runs. On May 26 against Winston-Salem, the Keys tied a team-record, hitting three home runs courtesy of Conor Bierfeldt, Wynston Sawyer, and Aderlin Rodriguez.

 

 

Tonight’s notes are below.

 

Shake Your Keys!

 

Ethan

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Wednesday, June 1, 2016 · Game #51 · Home Game #24

Frederick Keys (25-25) vs. Potomac Nationals (26-22)

LHP Trevor Belicek (0-0, 6.00) vs. RHP Phillips Valdez (5-2, 3.83)

MUDDIES FORCE SERIES SPLIT: The Carolina Mudcats scored four early runs and got tremendous pitching to defeat the Frederick Keys 4-1 on Monday afternoon at Five County Stadium. Ending 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position, the orange and black were forced to settle for a four-game split with the Muddies. All four Carolina runs came home in the first four innings. Joey Meneses doubled home Ryan Gebhardt in the first, as the home team drew first blood. In the second, Carolina made it a 3-0 game as once again Meneses came through. With two outs, the Mudcats singled home a pair, before Gebhardt hit a solo homer off Mitch Horacek in the fourth to complete the scoring. Offensively, Frederick was held to just four hits, as Raymar Navarro fired off five innings and allowed one unearned run. His bullpen mates were just as effective, giving up only one hit across four shutout innings.

NOT A BAD FINISH: The Keys finished 5-2 on their recent roadtrip, marking the third straight winning road trip this year. On the season, the orange and black are 16-11 in game away from the friendly confines, giving them the second-most road victories in the league (only Salem at 18-8 has won more). Over the week-long trip to Winston-Salem and Carolina the Keys tallied 19 extra-base hits to go along with seven home runs. Ending with 31 runs total, most of the Keys damage came during the Dash series, when they scored 23 runs in three games (7.7 RPG) and finished with 10 or more hits in all three contests (33 total). Fortunately, strong pitching prevailed in the Carolina set, enabling the Keys to earn a split. Despite averaging two runs through four games, the team received three quality starts, enabling the club to tally a 2.36 ERA over the seven games.   

MAY DON’T GO AWAY!: The Keys won 10 of their last 14 May games (including five of the last seven) to end the month with an 18-9 record. That was the top mark in the Carolina League and was the club’s best month since July 2011, when they posted a 20-8 record thanks in part to a 2.44 staff ERA. Pitching was Frederick’s formula to success this time as well, as the Keys lead the circuit with a 2.68 mark. Overall, eight Keys staff members finished with ERAs below two. At the plate, Frederick hit .242 but was led by Aderlin Rodriguez (.333), Erick Salcedo (.321) and Wynston Sawyer (.316). Rodriguez finished second in the CL in hitting (trailing only Carolina’s Joey Meneses who ended at .344).  Meanwhile, Sawyer led all CL players in on-base percentage (.475) and finished second with 24 walks. Those figures were also fourth and second in the MiLB respectively.  

 STARTING PITCHERS SET TONE: In May, Keys starters turned in a 2.71 ERA (149.2 IP/45ER), while in 15 of Frederick’s 18 wins, the starting pitcher delivered a quality start (six innings or more and three earned runs or less). During the recent roadtrip, Keys starters posted four quality starts (Grimes twice, Long, and Romero), while Keys starters have turned in quality outings in six of the last 10 contests (and three of four). 

GRIMES AND SAWYER SWEEP WEEKLY AWARDS: On Tuesday, Wynston Sawyer and Matthew Grimes were named the Carolina League Player and Pitcher of the Week respectively for May 23-29. It marked the first time two Keys have garnered both weekly accolades since June 6-13, 2011, when Steve Bumbry (player) and Nick Haughian (pitcher) won both. In eight games, Sawyer batted .385 with two homers, one double, one triple and five RBIs. Grimes earned his second CL Pitcher of the Week honor, after not allowing any runs over two starts (spanning 15 innings). His best performance of the year came on Sunday when he tossed eight shutout innings of two-hit baseball.

GALLARDO TO REHAB WITH KEYS: Orioles starting pitcher, Yovani Gallardo, is scheduled to pitch for the Keys on a Major League rehab assignment on Thursday. On the disabled list since April 23 with right shoulder biceps tendinitis, Gallardo will throw game one of Thursday’s twinbill starting at 5 p.m. In four starts with the Orioles this year he is 1-1 with a 7.00 ERA. Signed by Baltimore to a two-year contract in February, Gallardo pitched for Texas in 2015 where he went 13-11 with a 3.42 ERA in 32 starts.

WYNNS MOVED UP TO DOUBLE-A: Austin Wynns was promoted to Double-A Bowie on Tuesday, becoming the sixth Keys player to earn a promotion this year. He joins John Means and Jimmy Yacabonis who were added to the Baysox roster last week. This is Wynns second call-up to Bowie. Last year he hit .375 (6-for-16) in four games.  With Frederick this year he was batting .248 with four homers and 12 RBIs.

SALCEDO’S HIT STREAK COMES TO AN END: Erick Salcedo saw his 14-game hitting streak end on Monday as he went 0-for-3. The sixth-longest mark in the CL this year, Salcedo batted .422 (19-for-45) with a homer, six RBIs and five runs scored. The highlight of the streak came nearly two weeks ago, when Salcedo hit his first professional homer (he had played 428 games and gone 1,348 at-bats without one). The 14-game stretch was the longest by a Frederick player since August of 2013 when Travis Adair hit in 18 consecutive contests.

HOMER HAPPY: The Keys have been one of the top home run hitting teams in the Carolina League this season. That was certainly the case in the Winston-Salem series, Frederick hit six home runs in three days. Half of that came on Thursday, when the Keys set a new game-high for home runs in 2016 (three). Frederick has hit nine in its last 11 games and 18 in May, the most since they clubbed 22 in August 2014. The orange and black are tied for second in home runs (33) in the circuit (with Myrtle Beach). Lynchburg leads the way with 46.

ODDS AND ENDS: Wynston Sawyer has a 20-game on-base streak this month, which is also the second-longest by a Keys player this year (Steve Wilkerson reached in 22 straight from April 11-May 4, the third-longest by a CL player in 2016). Sawyer’s current streak is the longest active mark in the league, while he has a .490 on-base percentage in May. Josh Hart has a season-high four-game hitting streak during which time he is (7-for-13) with three doubles, two runs scored and an RBI (his average has gone up from .159-.194. Tanner Scott went 3-0 with a 1.29 ERA in May, during which time he allowed only one hit and two runs in 14 innings (.025 average). Luis Gonzalez tallied a 0.60 ERA in six May contests (15 IP/1ER).

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER:  Right-hander Phillips Valdez makes his 10th start on Wednesday and his second against Frederick in 2016. He is the No. 26 prospect in the Nationals system according to Baseball America. Valdez’s most recent outing came last Wednesday against Salem. Earning the win, he allowed two unearned runs on five hits in six innings. He struck out six and did not walk a batter. Coming off a strong May, Valdez went 2-1 with a 3.20 ERA in four starts. Valdez has worked six or more innings in each of his last six starts, winning three of them. In his only start against the Keys on May 8, Valdez earned the win tossing seven innings of one-hit, one-run baseball. Carrying a no-hitter into the seventh, the righty allowed a two-out base hit to Aderlin Rodriguez to break up the no-hit. That was the only hit the Keys got all game. In 2016, Valdez’s command has been much improved as he has only 12 walks in 54 innings (2.0 BB/9IP ratio)  Last year with the P-Nats that figure was 3.8 BB/9IP ratio while in his career that mark is 4.0 BB/9IP. Promoted to the P-Nats from Low-A Hagerstown last May 28, Valdez went a combined 8-4 with a 2.81 ERA. With the Nationals the 24-year-old was 3-2 with a 3.77 ERA in 22 games (10 starts). He fared much better as a reliever (2.25 ERA) than as a starter (4.15 ERA). Currently with his third organization, Valdez opened his career with the Cleveland Indians, who signed him as an international free agent in 2009. From there, Valdez would be signed by Tampa Bay, but would not pitch in 2011, before the Nationals signed him in May 2012. Valdez hails from San Pedro de Macoris, a town which has been dubbed “the cradle of shortstops” more than 100 players from this town have gone on to play Major League Baseball since players from the Dominican began coming to play professional baseball in 1958. Among those from San Pedro who have gone on to the Major Leagues: Robinson Cano, Sammy Sosa, Alfonso Soriano, Tony Fernandez.

To Zebulon We Go!

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

The Keys are fresh off a sweep of the Winston-Salem Dash on Thursday and try and keep the momentum going as the team faces the Carolina Mudcats for the first time on Friday. The two sides will play a four-game set, while a Keys win will get the team over the .500 mark for the first time since April 13!

Right-hander Lucas Long gets the ball for the Keys and will be opposed by Muddies righty Max Povse. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 p.m and today’s notes are below.

To catch the broadcast, you can tune in on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com or the TuneIn Radio App (which can be accessed by clicking the link below.

Shake your Keys!

Geoff

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Friday, May 27, 2016 · Game #47 · Road Game #24

Frederick Keys (23-23) vs. Carolina Mudcats (18-27)

RHP Lucas Long (2-2, 3.41) vs. RHP Max Povse (3-2, 2.66)

                                                                                                                                                               LONGBALLS LIFT KEYS TO SWEEP: The Frederick Keys hit three home runs and utilized two four-run innings to defeat the Winston-Salem Dash 9-4 on Thursday night at BB&T Ballpark. It was the Keys third sweep of the season. Winston-Salem grabbed the initial lead thanks to a two-run homer by Michael Suiter. That lead did not last for long, as the Keys responded with a four-run fourth against Brandon Brennan. Wynston Sawyer acted first, hitting a solo homer, while five of the next six reached base. Singles by Jomar Reyes and Erick Salcedo gave the Keys the lead, while an RBI fielder’s choice by Jay Gonzalez closed out the scoring. The Dash tied the game in the home-half of the inning, before the Keys took the lead for good in the seventh. An RBI single by Rodriguez plated the go-ahead run, before Conor Bierfeldt blasted a three-run homer to give the Keys a four-run cushion. David Richardson earned the win for the Keys tossing four frames of two-run relief.

ON EVEN TERMS: Thanks to Thursday’s win, the Keys have moved back to .500 on the season for the first time since April 14, when the team was 4-4. The Keys climb to .500 is due to a fantastic May. After closing out April with a 7-16 record (the club’s low-water mark for the season) Frederick has flipped April’s record around, going 16-7, the top May mark in the Carolina League (the 16 wins are also the most since August 2014). A lot of the credit goes to the Keys pitching staff, which has posted a 2.87 ERA in 23 games. Frederick’s team ERA is also the league’s best mark in May.

HOMER HAPPY: The Keys have been one of the top home run hitting teams in the Carolina League this season. That was certainly the case in the Winston-Salem series, Frederick hit six home runs in three days. Half of that came on Thursday, when the Keys set a new game-high for home runs in 2016 (three). Frederick has hit eight in its last seven games, while the orange and black are tied for second in home runs with Myrtle Beach (32). Only Lynchburg (42) has more.

ATTACK OF THE BATS: Thanks in part to the home run, the Keys have scored seven or more runs in three straight games for the first time all year. Over that stretch, the team has tallied 23 runs, the team’s second-largest output over a three-game span this year (24 from May 2-4).  In the Dash series, Frederick posted 33 hits, with 14 going for extra-bases.  

MOVING ON UP: Before Thursday’s game, John Means and Jimmy Yacabonis were promoted to the Double-A Bowie Baysox. The duo becomes the fourth and fifth members of the Keys to get promotions this season. Coming off a seven-inning complete game shutout against Potomac on Monday, Means went 5-0 with a 1.80 ERA in nine starts. He leaves the Carolina League ranking third in ERA, second in strikeouts (54) and fifth in innings pitched. Yacabonis went 0-2 with five saves (six chances) and a 3.98 ERA in 16 games. Over 8.1 innings in May he did not allow a run. He heads to Double-A as the CL leader in games pitched (16) and tied for third in games finished.   

ROCKIN’ RODRIGUEZ: Aderlin Rodriguez is scorching lately, as he has multiple hits in five of his last seven ballgames. During that time, Rodriguez is batting .500 (14-for-28) with two home runs, four doubles, a triple, and six RBIs. In May, Rodriguez is batting .369 with five long balls and 17 RBIs. His batting average is the highest in the Carolina League this month, while his five homers are tied for the most in the circuit.  

 STARTING PITCHERS SET TONE: In May, Keys starters have a 2.72 ERA (125.2 IP/38ER), while in 11 of Frederick’s 16 wins, the starting pitcher has delivered a quality start (six innings or more and three earned runs or less). Until a loss last Wednesday, the team had won every game where a starter had turned in a quality appearance this month. Keys starters have turned in quality outings in six of the last 10 contests.  

SALCEDO KEEPS HIT STREAK ALIVE: Erick Salcedo went 1-for-4 with an RBI on Thursday to extend his hitting streak to a career-best 11 games. That mark is also the longest by a Keys player in 2016, and the longest active run in the Carolina League. Over his current streak, Salcedo is batting .417 (15-for-36) with a homer, four RBIs and four runs scored. The highlight of the streak came last Friday, when Salcedo hit his first professional homer (he had played 428 games and gone 1,348 at-bats without one).

 NEED FOR SPEED: Jay Gonzalez stole a career-high three bases on Thursday to move his season total to 27. He currently ranks third in minor league baseball, with only Jacksonville’s Yefri Perez (31) and Salem’s Yoan Moncada (30) posting more. This season, Gonzalez is 27-for-30 in steal attempts. He was not caught until his 15th steal attempt.

ODDS AND ENDS: In the last six games, the Keys have turned 10 double plays, but have also hit into 10 twin killings. Wynston Sawyer has a 16-game on-base streak this month, which is also the second-longest by a Keys player this year (Steve Wilkerson reached in 22 straight from April 11-May 4, the third-longest by a CL player in 2016). Sawyer’s current streak is the third-longest active mark in the league, while he has a .500 on-base percentage in May. Luis Gonzalez saw his scoreless inning streak this month end at 11.2 frames after an eighth inning homer by Hunter Jones on Tuesday.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Max Povse makes his ninth start of the year on Friday and his first against Frederick. His most recent start came last Sunday at Wilmington. Earning the win, the right-hander pitched five innings of five-hit baseball and allowed one unearned run. He struck out six and did not walk a batter. Currently, Povse leads the CL in WHIP (0.99), is fifth in ERA (2.66), tied for third in strikeouts (47) and is first among starters in fewest baserunners per nine (9.13) and second in BB/9IP ratio (1.71). Opponents are hitting just .216 against him, while he has allowed three runs or less in every start but one. Povse split 2015 between Low-A Rome and Carolina, combining to go 5-5 with a 4.15 ERA. He was promoted to the Mudcats on June 25. In five starts with Carolina he struggled, going 1-3 with a 9.33 ERA before going on the DL with a right shoulder strain on July 21. He missed the rest of the year. A third round pick by Atlanta in 2014 out of UNC-Greensboro, Povse is from Cary, NC (40 min from Zebulon).

Let’s Go for the Sweep!

Good Evening Keys Fans!

The Keys try for a three-game sweep of the Winston-Salem Dash on Thursday night from BB&T Ballpark. Additionally, if the Keys win they’ll hit the .500 mark for the first time since April 15. This month the club has gone 15-7, while another win would also give Frederick its mos wins in a month since August 2014.

Big kudos to John Means and Jimmy Yacabonis who have been promoted to Double-A Bowie. Means was outstanding over nine starts, surrendering two runs or less in all of them (pretty remarkable feat) while Yacabonis did not allow a run in May while coming out of the bullpen. This year five Keys have received call-ups to the Baysox (Garrett Cortright, Anthony Caronia and Mike Zouzalik are the others).

After being acquired in the Brian Matusz trade, left-hander Trevor Belicek makes his Keys debut while he will be opposed by Dash righty Brandon Brennan. First pitch comes your way at 7:00 p.m, while the broadcast can be heard on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com or the TuneIn radio App. OR…you can click on the link below:

Doug will keep you comfortable on the radio. Also, be on the lookout for our next Keys Corner tomorrow! We talk about Erick Salcedo’s first pro home run, discuss upcoming promotions and provide details about the team’s next bobblehead giveaway!

Today’s notes are below.

Shake your Keys!

Geoff

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Thursday, May 26, 2016 · Game #46 · Road Game #23

Frederick Keys (22-23) vs. Winston-Salem Dash (17-30)

LHP Trevor Belicek (0-0, –) vs. RHP Brandon Brennan (0-3, 7.90)

KEYS USE FOUR-RUN SECOND IN 7-5 WIN: The Keys scored four times on five hits in the second inning and never trailed en route to a 7-5 win against Winston-Salem on Wednesday night at BB&T Ballpark. In the second, Jonah Heim, Cam Kneeland, and Erick Salcedo all slashed RBI singles with the bases loaded, while another came home on a Jay Gonzalez double play. The Dash would close to within one run in the sixth inning thanks to a two-run single by Hunter Jones to make it 6-5, but a bases loaded walk in the ninth provided the final cushion as the Keys guaranteed themselves a series win. Mitch Horacek tossed five innings of three-run baseball, while Jimmy Yacabonis pitched the last 2.1 innings to earn his fifth save of the season.

BATS COME TO LIFE: The Keys have scored seven runs in back-to-back games for the first time since May 2 and 3 at Wilmington. The 14 combined runs in the first two games of this series is also the most since that stretch at Frawley Stadium (18). The team has a total of 23 hits in this series, with 12 hit coming Tuesday, the most by the Keys since May 2 (when they recorded 13 at Wilmington). Additionally, those 12 hits tied for the third-most Frederick had posted in a game this season. The Keys also have five extra-base hits each of the last two days, one-shy of their high-water mark for 2016.

 LET’S PLAY LONGBALL: The Keys have been one of the top home run hitting teams in the Carolina League this season. On Tuesday, the Keys hit two home runs in a game (equals a season-high) for the fourth time this year, and on Wednesday, Cam Kneeland blasted his second of the season. Frederick has hit five in its last six games, while the orange and black rank third in the CL with 29 (trailing only Lynchburg-41-and Myrtle Beach-32). Aderlin Rodriguez leads the way with eight (ranking second in the circuit) while Jonah Heim has hit five, including four this month. Heim and Rodriguez are tied for second in the league in May home runs. Only Myrtle Beach’s Yasiel Balaguert (five) has more.

EXTRA, EXTRA!: The orange and black bats have broken out for 10 extra-base hits the last two nights. On Tuesday, Wynston Sawyer doubled, tripled and hit a home run, Steve Wilkerson gained a two-bagger, and Conor Bierfeldt launched a home run. Last night, Aderlin Rodriguez gathered three of the knocks with two doubles and a triple. It was the first time a Keys batter has doubled twice in a game.

MOVING ON UP: Before Thursday’s game, John Means and Jimmy Yacabonis were promoted to the Double-A Bowie Baysox. The duo becomes the fourth and fifth members of the Keys to get promotions this season. This is the first call-up to the Eastern League for Means and Yacabonis. Coming off a seven-inning complete game shutout against Potomac on Monday, Means went 5-0 with a 1.80 ERA in nine starts. He leaves the Carolina League ranking third in ERA, second in strikeouts (54) and fifth in innings pitched. Yacabonis went 0-2 with five saves (six chances) and a 3.98 ERA in 16 games. Over 8.1 innings in May he did not allow a run. He heads to Double-A as the CL leader in games pitched (16) and tied for third in games finished.   

ROCKIN’ RODRIGUEZ: Aderlin Rodriguez is scorching lately, as he has multiple hits in four of his last six ballgames. During that time, Rodriguez is batting .478 (11-for-23) with a home run, three doubles, a triple, and four RBIs. Rodriguez has the top average on the club in the month of May at .354 with four long balls and 15 RBIs. His May batting average is the second-highest in the Carolina League to Hunter Jones of Winston-Salem (.359).

STARTING PITCHERS SET TONE: In May, Keys starters have posted a 2.64 ERA (122.2 IP/36ER), while in 11 of Frederick’s 15 wins, the starting pitcher has delivered a quality start (six innings or more and three earned runs or less). Until a loss last Wednesday, the team had won every game where a starter had turned in a quality appearance this month. Keys starters have turned in quality outings in six of the last nine contests.  

 SALCEDO KEEPS HIT STREAK ALIVE: Erick Salcedo went 1-for-4 on Wednesday to extend his hitting streak to a season and career-high 10 games. He has tied Aderlin Rodriguez for the longest streak by a Keys player this season (Rodriguez hit in 10 straight from April 24-May 4). Additionally, the Venezuelan eclipsed his nine-gamer from June 12-24 in 2014 with Low-A Burlington (Angels). That was also the beginning of a 17-game stretch where Salcedo recorded hits in 16 of 17 contests.  Over his current streak, Salcedo is batting .438 (14-for-32) with a homer, three RBIs and four runs scored. The highlight of the streak came last Friday, when Salcedo hit his first professional homer (he had played 428 games and gone 1,348 at-bats without one).

 NEED FOR SPEED: After a week-long draught (in part due to rain) Jay Gonzalez picked up his 24th steal on Monday. At the moment, he is fourth in the minors with 24.  Only Jacksonville’s Yefri Perez (31), Salem’s Yoan Moncada (30), and Lynchburg’s Greg Allen (25) have stolen more. This season, Gonzalez is 24-for-27 in steal attempts. He was not caught until his 15th steal attempt.

ODDS AND ENDS: A win tonight would move the Keys to .500 for the first time since April 14. The Keys have gone 15-7 in May, while a victory on Thursday would also give the Keys their most wins in a month since August of 2014 (when the Keys went 16-14).  Wynston Sawyer has a 15-game on-base streak this month, which is also the second-longest by a Keys player this year (Steve Wilkerson reached in 22 straight from April 11-May 4, the third-longest by a CL player in 2016). Sawyer has a .494 on-base percentage in May and is third with a .317 average. Luis Gonzalez saw his scoreless inning streak this month end at 11.2 frames after an eighth inning homer by Hunter Jones on Tuesday.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Brandon Brennan makes his ninth start of the season and fifth with Winston-Salem on Thursday. Starting the year at Double-A Birmingham, Brennan posted a 1-3 record and 14.11 ERA with the Barons before his demotion on May 3. With the Dash, he has gone 0-3 with a 7.90 ERA in 13.2 innings. He’s allowed 22 hits, 12 runs, walked six and struck out five. With the Dash in 12 starts in 2015, Brennan was 3-4 with a 3.55 ERA. He missed two and a half weeks in August due to a finger blister, and missed the first two and a half months of the year due to a pectoral injury he suffered late in spring training. In 2014, he spent time with Great Falls, Kannapolis, and Winston-Salem while working his way back from Tommy John surgery, which he had on his 22nd birthday (July 23, 2013). A fourth round selection in 2012 by the Chicago White Sox, Brennan was taken out of Orange Coast College in California, the same school where San Francisco Giants pitcher Sergio Romo and Baltimore Orioles Minor League Outfield and Baserunning Coordinator Scott Beerer spent part of their collegiate careers. Out of high school, Brennan had a scholarship offer to play for the University of Oregon. There he redshirted, before transferring to Orange Coast. He was also selected in the 40th round in 2010 by the Colorado Rockies out of Capistrano Valley HS, but elected not to sign.

Keys Try and Move Within a Game of .500!

Good Afternoon Keys Fans!

The Frederick Keys will try and move within one game of .500 for the first time since April! Additionally, a victory would hand the Keys their third series win in-a-row. The team received another outstanding start from Matthew Grimes to go with a solid offensive showing in a 7-1 triumph on Tuesday.

Left-hander Mitch Horacek gets the ball for the Keys while his opposition will be right-hander Spencer Adams. Just 20 years old, Adams has thrown seven and eight innings respectively in his last two starts and paces the league in innings pitched.

Today’s game notes are below, while Doug Raftery has the call on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com and the TuneIn Radio App (click below). Pregame show gets underway at 6:45.

Shake your Keys!

Geoff

NYMEO Field · 21 Stadium Drive · Frederick, MD 21703

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 · Game #45 · Road Game #22

Frederick Keys (21-23) vs. Winston-Salem Dash (17-29)

LHP Mitch Horacek (1-4, 5.21) vs. RHP Spencer Adams (3-0, 2.15)

GRIMES AND LONGBALL HELP KEYS TAKE SERIES OPENER: Seven shutout inning from Matthew Grimes and home runs by Jonah Heim and Conor Bierfeldt guided the Frederick Keys to a 7-1 victory over the Winston-Salem Dash on Tuesday night at BB&T Ballpark. It was Frederick’s fourth win in its last five games and moved the team within two games of .500 for the season. Grimes and Jordan Stephens matched each other on the mound through four innings, but the orange and black would score in each of the next three innings. Wynston Sawyer drove in the first run with a double in the fifth, while a two-run homer by Heim was the end of the line for Stephens. In the seventh, the Keys wrapped up their scoring with an RBI triple by Sawyer and a two-run blast by Bierfeldt.

BATS COME TO LIFE: After three of Frederick’s previous four wins came while scoring three or fewer runs, the offense flexed its muscles on Tuesday. The seven runs by the Keys were the most the team had posted since May 11 (in a 7-2 win over Wilmington), while the team finished with 12 hits, the most by the Keys since May 2 (when they recorded 13 at Wilmington). Additionally, the 12 hits tied for the third-most Frederick had posted in a game this season. Of the 12 knocks, five went for extra-bases, one-shy of the Keys high-water mark for 2016.

 LET’S PLAY LONGBALL: The Keys have been one of the top home run hitting teams in the Carolina League this season. On Tuesday, the Keys hit two home runs in a game (equals a season-high) for the fourth time this year. Frederick has hit four in its last five games, while the orange and black rank third in the CL with 28 (trailing only Lynchburg-39-and Myrtle Beach-30). Aderlin Rodriguez leads the way with and eight (ranking second in the circuit) while Jonah Heim has hit five, including four this month. Heim and Rodriguez are tied for second in the league in May home runs. Only Myrtle Beach’s Yasiel Balaguert (five) has more this month.

GRIMES MATCHES MEANS: The day after his teammate John Means threw a complete game shutout, Matthew Grimes turned in another sterling performance on Tuesday. Delivering seven shutout innings of five-hit baseball, the former Georgia Tech product picked up his third straight win. It is the first time that has occurred in his career, while the righty has allowed just one run in his last 20.2 innings. During that time his ERA has dipped to 1.39, the second-lowest in the league. Means is right behind with a 1.80 ERA.

 STARTING PITCHERS SET TONE: If you exclude the second game on Monday’s doubleheader where the Keys employed the bullpen for seven innings, (regular) Keys starting pitchers have gone 16 innings without allowing a run. In May, Keys starters have posted a 2.52 ERA (117.2 IP/33ER), while in 11 of Frederick’s 14 wins, the starting pitcher has delivered a quality start (six innings or more and three earned runs or less). Until a loss last Wednesday, the team had won every game where a starter had turned in a quality appearance this month. Keys starters have turned in quality outings in six of the last eight contests.  

 SALCEDO KEEPS HIT STREAK ALIVE: Erick Salcedo went 1-for-4 on Tuesday to extend his hitting streak to a season-high nine games. With one more hit, he will pull even with Aderlin Rodriguez for the longest streak by a Keys player this season (Rodriguez hit in 10 straight from April 24-May 4). Additionally, the nine-gamer ties a career-best for the Venezuelan who also did it from June 12-24 in 2014 with Low-A Burlington (Angels). That was also the beginning of a 17-game stretch where Salcedo recorded hits in 16 of 17 contests.  Over his current streak, Salcedo is batting .464 (13-for-28) with a homer, two RBIs and four runs scored. The highlight of the streak came last Friday, when Salcedo hit his first professional homer (he had played 428 games and gone 1,348 at-bats without one).

 NEED FOR SPEED: After a week-long draught (in part due to rain) Jay Gonzalez picked up his 24th steal on Monday. At the moment, he is third in the minors with 24.  Only Jacksonville’s Yefri Perez (31) and Salem’s Yoan Moncada (30) have stolen more. This season, Gonzalez is 24-for-27 in steal attempts. He was not caught until his 15th steal attempt.

ODDS AND ENDS: A win tonight would move the Keys within a game of .500 for the first time since April 15 (the Keys have not been at .500 since April 14). The Keys have gone 14-7 in May, while a victory on Wednesday would also give the Keys their most wins in a month since last July (when the Keys went 15-15).  Wynston Sawyer has a 14-game on-base streak this month, which is also the second-longest by a Keys player this year (Steve Wilkerson reached in 22 straight from April 11-May 4, the third-longest by a CL player in 2016). Sawyer has a has a .500 on-base percentage in May and is tied for the team lead this month with a .333 average. Luis Gonzalez saw his scoreless inning streak this month end at 11.2 frames after an eighth inning homer by Hunter Jones on Tuesday.

TODAY’S OPPOSING PITCHER: Right-hander Spencer Adams makes his 10th start of the season on Wednesday and his first outing against the Keys. He is the No. 4 prospect in the White Sox system according to Baseball America. He leads the Carolina League in innings pitched (52). The right-hander’s most recent outing came at Salem last Friday. Working seven inning, Adams received a no-decision though allowed only two runs (one earned) on six hits. The start before (May 14), he defeated Potomac by working a career-high eight inning of two-run, three-hit baseball. The 20-year-old split 2015 between Low-A Kannapolis and Winston-Salem going 12-5 with a 2.99 ERA in 24 games. Promoted to Winston-Salem on July 19, Adams went 9-5 with a 3.24 ERA at Kannapolis and was 12th in the SAL in ERA at the time he was moved up. Adams was selected by Chicago in the second round of the 2014 draft out of White County High School. Just 19 years old, the right-hander went 3-3 with a 3.67 ERA with the AZL White Sox after signing. He posted a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 14.8 and struck out nearly 13 batters per nine innings. Adams was committed to the University of Georgia out of White County (GA) High School but elected to go pro. He throws a fastball, a slider and a changeup.

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