Not A Good Night To Be A Sauce Packet

At Harry Grove Stadium, we have the running of the sauce packets brought to you by Taco Bell.  In Monday night’s game against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, it is safe to say that the packets were… not on their game.


Our intern Jeff Kurkjian, needless to say, jinxed the entire operation when he tweeted out the following:

He was joined by our other interns, Kevin and Kyler, who shared in the excitement but no could have guess what happened next. The packets first start off in the wonderful city of Frederick and race to Harry Grove Stadium.

That is when things began to go south. The hot sauce, was taken out of the race early with a little bit of an altercation with the fence…

*Video courtesy of Thomas Walker.

So with just two packets left in the race it, it was tied till the very end.  The mild and the fire sauce got down to a few feet when the unexpected happened.

The mild sauce ended up on top in one of the strangest Taco Bell Sauce races in the history of Harry Grove Stadium.

Tuesday, the Keys went into extra innings and the sauces ran again.  Our interns, Jeff and Kyler, got redemption by NOT falling on their faces.  Jeff, dressed in the hot sauce ended up on top, redeeming his pathetic performance from the night before.

Come on out to the Grove to this Saturday to see the Cowboy Monkey Rodeo at  7p.m. Odds are it will be even better than Monday’s ill-fated sauce debacle.

Monkeys riding dogs herding sheep

*SATURDAY UPDATE: At last, the day has come.

*FRIDAY UPDATE: This is how we feel about Cowboy Monkey Rodeo Night today, on Cowboy Monkey Eve:

*UPDATE: Keyote’s ready for Cowboy Monkey Night. Are you?


Let the countdown commence.

Cowboy Monkey Rodeo returns to Harry Grove Stadium, Saturday, August 17 during after the Keys’ 6 p.m. game against Winston-Salem.

*If you don’t know about Tim Lepard and Team Ghost Riders, this will get you up to speed:

“That monkey rides that dog better than cowboy rides a horse.”

In addition to the Cowboy Monkey Extravaganza, we’ll be handing out rubber duckies to the first 1,000 fans in the gate courtesy of Precision Heating & Cooling.


Want free tickets? You can win tickets to Saturday’s game by listening to 106.9 The Eagle in the morning:

Don’t miss the monkeys riding dogs herding sheep! Get your tickets now!


Highlights from last year’s Cowboy Monkey Rodeo at The Grove:

And more cowboy monkey photos, because they’re great:

monkeys38 monkeys52 monkeys70 monkeys115 monkeys119

Betemit returns for second rehab stint

*MONDAY UPDATE: Betemit will return to Harry Grove Stadium to continue his rehab tonight at 7 p.m. Get your tickets here.

From the press release:

“Betemit hit .261 with 12 home runs, 19 doubles and 40 RBIs for the Orioles last season, his first with club, while primarily playing third base. He went 3-for-9 with three RBIs playing for the Keys on Aug. 12 and 13 against Myrtle Beach. He then played five games with Double-A Bowie and batted .353 (6-for-17) with three RBIs and four walks. Betemit began his rehab assignment with the Gulf Coast League Orioles on August 6, playing in five games and batting .375 (6-for-16) with two doubles and three RBIs.”

Wilson Betemit, who suffered a pretty severe knee sprain on March 25, rehabbed in Frederick against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans Monday, Aug. 12 and Tuesday, Aug. 13 and went 3-for-9 with three RBIs. If you want to see the injury, Watch it here, but be warned, it’s a little bit ugly. More on Betemit here.


You can check him out taking BP before Monday’s game below:

Monday’s game – -1-for-5, two strikeouts

In his first two at-bats, Betemit went 0-for-2 with a strikeout.

With runners on first and second base with no outs, Betemit strikes out on a check swing in his third at-bat of the game.

After the seventh inning stretch, Betemit comes to the plate with two outs and singles to left on the first pitch.

In the bottom of the ninth inning, with the Keys down 6-4, Betemit grounds out to the second baseman.

Tuesday’s game — 2-for-4, three RBIs

Betemit grounds out in his first at-bat against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans:

And if you didn’t see it the first time, check out this angle from the press box.

In his second at-bat, Betemit singled in two runs in the bottom of the second inning, increasing Frederick’s lead to four runs.

Once again, here’s another angle of the at-bat:

Similar to his first at-bat, his third plate appearance resulted in a ground ball to the second baseman.

In his fourth at-bat, Betemit singles to right driving in another Keys run. He has three RBIs on the night:

Betemit Rehabs, Keys Look For Win Against Pelicans

Wilson Betemit will DH and bat second for the Frederick Keys tonight against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans.  To read more about his rehab trip to Frederick, check out this article on our blog.


The Keys got just three hits in a 6-0 loss to the Pelicans last night.  Zach Clark pitched five innings and gave up five earned runs and walked seven batters.  Matt Hobgood pitched four scoreless innings in relief and struck out three batters.

The Keys are hoping to have a little more success in tonight’s 7pm game against the Pelicans.  Frederick is just 6-12 against Myrtle Beach and has lost seven of their last eight games at home.


Michael Ohlman will bat third in tonight’s lineup.  He is batting .313 with five doubles in the month of August.  Check out some his swings during batting practice before tonight’s game.

Trent Howard will be doing the pitching for the Keys tonight. He has yet to factor into a decision this year as a starter in ten starts.  He is 3-0 as a reliever with a 0.62 ERA.


For everything you need to know about tonight’s game, check out the game notes below.

*MASN’s Steve Melewski has reported that Cuban outfielder, Dariel Alvarez, will make his pro debut tonight. Alvarez played for Camaguey of the Cuban League for five years before signing with the Orioles.  He batted .297 with 37 homers and 180 RBIs for Camaguey.

*Got any plans on Saturday? Come on out to Harry Grove Stadium at 6pm for the Cowboy Monkey Rodeo.  Confused as to what exactly that may be? That’s okay. Watch this video!

Wilson Betemit to rehab with Keys


*Betemit went 1-for-5 in his first rehab game with the Keys. Watch all five ABs here.tumblr_m5y1xod0rM1r41pz5o1_1280Another Oriole  is going to rehab at The Grove.

Wilson Betemit, a 10-year MLB veteran, is going to report to the Keys today, according to multiple reports. See two of them below:

Betemit hit .261 with 12 home runs, 19 doubles and 40 RBIs for the Orioles last season, his first with club, while primarily playing third base. He began his rehab assignment with the Gulf Coast League Orioles last week, playing in five games and batting .375 (6-for-16) with two doubles and three RBIs.

Betemit suffered a pretty severe knee sprain on March 25 during a spring training game. Watch it here, but be warned, it’s a little bit ugly.


Betemit has played for seven teams, beginning his career with Atlanta. Named the Braves’ top prospect after the 2000 and 2001 seasons, Betemit played for Myrtle Beach in ‘01 (see above), slugging seven homers and driving in 43 runs while batting .277 with 20 doubles in 84 games. He also recorded the first inside-the-park home run in Pelicans history on June 11,

*Here’s Baseball America’s Top 20 Carolina League Prospects for 2001. Betemit’s at the top, former Key and Oriole Erik Bedard is 16 and MLB veteran Coco Crisp is at No. 20.

Here’s what they were saying about Betemit in 2001:

Betemit is a switch-hitter who can produce for average and power. It’s what he can do with the glove, however, that makes league managers believe he will be a success in the major leagues. Betemit has all the tools to win a Gold Glove at shortstop: size, arm strength and outstanding range.

He made so much progress with Myrtle Beach that Pelicans manager Brian Snitker envisioned him being part a regular of the Atlanta infield within the next two seasons. With Rafael Furcal at shortstop and Marcus Giles at second base, Betemit could fit in at third base, pushing Chipper Jones to the outfield permanently.

“He’s going to elevate his game wherever he’s at,” Snitker said. “Obviously, the tools are there.”

Salem manager Dave Collins likened Betemit to another Carolina League all-star shortstop: Tony Fernandez, who earned that honor in 1981–a year before Betemit was born. Fernandez went on to win four Gold Gloves with the Blue Jays.

Betemit needs to make some minor adjustments, such as drawing more walks and cutting down on his errors, but no one doubted he’ll become a star.

Betemit is the second Oriole to rehab with the Keys this season. Outfielder Steve Pearce was the first, playing two games at Harry Grove Stadium on July 29 and 30 before returning to Baltimore on July 31.

*Read these brief articles on Betemit’s rehab: and The Baltimore Sun.

Sunday Funday At The Grove

The Frederick Keys ended their six-game home losing streak last night with an impressive twelve run performance against the Carolina Mudcats. Frederick scored in five different innings and ended up on top 12-4.  Jerome Pena drove in three runs and hit a triple in last night’s game.

Zach Davies pitched a solid game giving up just two hits and one run in seven innings pitched.  Michael Ohlman went 2-for-4 with double and two runs scored.

The Keys will take on the Myrtle Beach Pelicans at 4pm today.  The Pelicans are coming in hot after winning their last three games against the Potomac Nationals.  The Keys have won just eight of 23 games played at home.


Ryan Minor’s lineup for today’s game.

The knuckle-baller, Zach Clark, will start tonight for the Keys. He is winless this season in five starts.


*For everything you need to know about today’s game, check out the game notes below.

*Steve Pearce just recently rehabbed here in Frederick and, according to Brittany Ghiroli, Wilson Betemit will be rehabbing here soon!

*Check out this awesome video recapping the Keys championship season!

Keys Hope To Roll Over Mudcats

Tonight is “Take Me Out To The Brawl Game” Night at the Frederick Keys.  The Key City Roller Derby faced off against the Black Eyed Suzies in the Keys lower parking lot behind right field.  Sadly, the hometown Key City Roller Derby did not pull off the win.

The Keys dropped the last two games at home to the Mudcats including last night’s 12-1 blowout.  Frederick has lost their last six home games but is hoping to turn that around with a win at the Grove tonight.  The game is set to start at 6pm.


Ryan Minor’s lineup for tonight’s game

Michael Ohlman, batting third tonight, is 8-for-25 with four doubles in the month of August.  He went 2-for-4 last night with a double and a RBI.

Also, Jerome Pena will be at shortstop again tonight in place of the injured Sammie Starr who suffered a concussion last week.  He is 3-for-11 with a home run while playing the shortstop position for the Keys.

Keys 511-1

Zach Davies will get the start for Frederick tonight.  In the second half of the season, he has posted an impressive 3.38 ERA in eight starts for the Keys.

*For everything you need to know about tonight’s game, check out the game notes below.

The Frederick’s manager, Ryan Minor, is like any other manager; committed to his team.  The last series against the Mudcats, Minor was thrown out of the game but could not stay away from the field for long.

*You can also check out this interview with Minor from last month.

*Be sure to come out to tonight’s game against the Mudcats, gates open at 5pm and the game starts at 6pm. We have very special on-field emcee’s for tonight’s game.

*Tonight is a FIREWORKS NIGHT at Harry Grove Stadium so be sure to make it out the game!

Take me out to the Brawl Game: Roller derby at The Grove

35 (1)

How about some road rash with your Saturday baseball?

Before the Keys host Carolina at 6 p.m. tonight, Key City Roller Derby will hold a match against the Black Eyed Suzies in the Keys lower parking lot behind right field. It will look something like this:

The bout starts at 2 (or shortly after) and the after party in the stadium starts at 4 p.m.  There’ll be live music, hard-hitting, beer, snacks and short shorts.

Admission for both events is $9 for adults and $4.50 for kids. Just one ticket for two games.

More info in this fancy flyer:

rolelr derby

How many hot dogs can you eat?

It’s back. The Keys annual celebration of baseball’s most popular protein returns to Harry Grove Stadium this evening — 50-Cent Hot Dog Night.
hot dog
Hot dog consumption begins when gates open at 6 p.m. for tonight’s 7 p.m. game against the Mudcats. The question that remains: How many can you eat?

Are you a lightweight?

Or a champion?

Before answering, some inspiring videos:

And for the ladies:

Best Month Ever: A look back at July’s top blog posts


The tale of Miguel Chalas and the skunk in Lynchburg was the most-viewed post in this blog’s most-viewed month.

July was a record-shattering month for this blog (Thanks everybody!). And, as I mentioned at the bottom of our last post, Unlocking the Keys was the fifth-most-read blog among all MiLB blogs last month.

Again, you are all wonderful for reading.

So, for your nostalgic reading pleasure, let’s recap the month of July on the Keys blog, one that saw trades, catwalks, polecats, a mascot murder and a near trade of Keyote.

The month begins in style

Thank goodness for Lynchburg, at least for this blog’s sake. After a few days of our typical pregame posts, we took a July 4th blog break and returned on July 9th, a few days after the Keys returned from their well-documented trip to Lynchburg.

Twitter is an amazing thing.

Thanks to the Twitterverse, the team’s impromptu fashion show in Lynchburg was broadcast to the masses and allowed for this post, which took on a life of its own on twitter for about three days and was the second-most viewed post in July. A taste of that post:


According to the people, these two are your winners:

Contestant #4: P Gene Escat

Contestant #8: P Jesse Beal

The skunk post

This was the most popular blog entry of the month and for good reason.

How often does a relief pitcher glove a skunk in right field? Again, thank you, Lynchburg. I will summarize this post with this:

The skunk story got picked up by The Washington Post’s Sports Bog and also by Ben’s Biz Blog in July’s Crooked Nuggets.

Anyway, fans agree that Miguel Chalas was the night’s hero.

Christmas in July, mascot murder and trade rumors, an actual trade and a walk-up song

The skunk and the fashion show carried the month, but a few other posts seemed to be fan favorites as well.

Christmas in July was well received, probably because 1) people enjoy Christmas and 2) Eric Bickel of the Sports Junkies tweeted out the blog. He took photos the game before and we used a couple. They’re good shots. Take a look:

Two things we learned on Clue Night: A lot of people weren’t terribly upset about the murder of rally mascot Frank Key and a Gatorade cooler can be a deadly weapon. Many of you relived Clue Night on the blog, feel free to do it again!

*An update to the Clue Night post — Stadium Butler Apter is debriefed, recalls the entire night:

Fans picked catcher Michael Ohlman’s walk-up song and chose to have him keep the one he started with — Big & Rich’s Save a Horse.

Nicky Delmonico was certainly a fan favorite in Frederick before his trade for veteran Brewers reliever Francisco Rodriguez. He’s playing for the Brevard County Manatees now and had a three-hit game a few days ago.

And on July 31, the threat of a possible trade of Keyote spiked blog views as his supporters came out in droves to block the deadline deal. Good news came out of that situation when he signed a 10-year contract extension.

Thanks for your continued reading! See you back here soon.

Shake your Keys.


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