Results tagged ‘ Keysfest ’

Five for Friday: KeysFest, potential Keys, 25th season gear and more

We’re seven days away from opening the 2013 season at Harry Grove Stadium, four days from the first Keys player and coach arrivals and less than a day from KeysFest and single-game tickets going on sale.

Here are five things you should know heading into the weekend.

1. KeysFest

The Keys’ annual fanfest event takes place tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Harry Grove Stadium. The event is free and will also include the fourth annual Tots2Tweens.com Egg Hunt. There will be free food samples, free games and activities for kids, including a baseball card station and the chance to play catch in right field. Tours will also be available at no cost, along with other activities to get you primed for Keys baseball in 2013.

Single-game tickets will go on sale at frederickkeys.com at 12:01 a.m. tonight and at the stadium box office  at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Be sure to secure your seats for opening weekend.

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Tim Berry started 13 games for the Keys last season and may be back for more in 2013.

2. The Fredrick 40 Countdown: Parts VII and VIII

Check out the final 10 players on our list of potential Keys for the 2013 season here. That group includes:

Tim Berry – He’s ranked the 11th-best prospect in the Orioles system by Baseball America and the 12th-best O’s farmhand by MLB.com. A slender southpaw, look for him in Frederick’s rotation this season.

Jesse Beal – This right-hander missed all of 2011 after having shoulder surgery, but began his comeback in the bullpen with Delmarva in 2012. In 2013, he could be an important piece of the ‘pen in Frederick.

Jason Esposito – He struggled in Delmarva last season, but hit .340 with 22 doubles, nine homers and 59 RBIs in 66 games in college the year prior. Steve Melewski of MASN wrote that the Shorebirds’ third baseman might be moving across the diamond to first this season.

Connor Narron – His father Jerry managed the Keys in the team’s first season and 25 years later, Connor might wear a Keys uniform. A player with the ability to play multiple positions, Narron’s more likely to be promoted to Frederick than start the season here.

Read about those four and the rest of the final 10 here.

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Jeremy Nowak led the Keys in batting average in 2012. He was released by the Orioles on Friday.

3. More roster cuts from spring training

At one point, the Orioles had about 200 minor league players in camp this spring. As a result, the paring down of that bunch to fit regular season rosters has been in full effect over the last week or so. Since March 22, The O’s have released 21 players, according to this Steve Melewski tweet, which came before word of two more releases today.

Among those that have been released are several former Keys and several players that could have landed in Frederick this season, including:

Jeremy Nowak – He led the Keys in batting average and hits last year and was a Carolina League All-Star. Odds are he’ll be picked up by another team.

Joe Oliveira – A Key in 2011 and 2012, Frederick’s catcher hit .209 in 72 games last season.

Buddy Sosnoskie – He has the best name on our list of potential Keys for 2013, but, sadly, it looks as if it name won’t be crammed on the back of a Keys jersey this season. Despite being released, the independent league outfielder was very gracious with his tweets following the bad news.

Other cuts include independent SS Chris Wade, former Keys first baseman Tyler Townsend (retired), former Keys reliever Matt Bywater and independent pitchers Kyle Mertins and Mike Recchia.

4. Keys 25th season gear

2013 marks Frederick’s 25th season of baseball since the Keys inception in 1989. With that silver anniversary comes lots of commemorative swag. A sneak peak of throwback jerseys to be worn on Thursday home games and a 25th season pin is below:

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5. A few links

*I blogged about it in Wednesday’s post and Steve Melewski wrote about it today — a six-man rotation in Frederick. Read Melewski’s story here.

*Some notes from Melewski on potential Keys Jesse Beal and Connor Narron.

*It looks as if 2000 Key Brian Roberts will move from the top of the O’s lineup to the bottom to start the season, according to Roch Kubatko’s story.

*ESPN’s Tim Kurkjian has love for 2011 Key Manny Machado.

*Watch 2012 Key Johnny Ruettiger lay out and make a nice grab against the Phillies.

Shake your Keys.

Townsend retires, Urrutia and projecting the Keys’ rotation

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Tyler Townsend, a Key in 2010, ’11 and ’12, retired yesterday.

A Key for the last three seasons, Tyler Townsend retired yesterday. A third-round pick by the Orioles in 2009, the left-handed hitting first baseman produced well when he was on the field, hitting .295 with 19 homers and 82 RBIs in his Keys career.

Injuries, however, plagued Townsend, 24, and his career lasted just four seasons. Townsend’s best season came in 2011, when he  played 67 games for Frederick, batting .317, slugging 24 doubles and 13 homers while driving in 50 RBIs. For his career, he hit .272 with 36 home runs, 64 doubles and 158 RBIs.

MASN’s Steve Melewski wrote a short story about Townsend retiring, which you can read here.

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Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia could start the 2013 season in Frederick.

*The plan when the Orioles signed Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia was to have him start the season in double-A Bowie and then quickly make his way to the majors. But visa issues delayed his arrival at spring training, which came on Feb. 28, and reports are that he may start his American baseball career at a lower level — Frederick or low-A Delmarva.

Urrutia, 26, defected from Cuba to the Dominican Republic in 2011, but hasn’t been able to play since 2010, when Cuba suspended him from baseball for attempting to defect. This Baltimore Sun article written by Dan Connolly gives some good background on Urrutia and how he ended up with the O’s.

O’s director of player development Brian Graham told Melewski that Urrutia could start with the Keys or the Shorebirds in this story.

*In another Melewski story, Graham said the O’s could employ six-man rotations with some of their minor league clubs. Given that possibility, let’s try and project the Keys 2013 rotation come opening night.

Potential Keys starters include Eduardo Rodriguez, Branden Kline, Tim Berry, Parker Bridwell, Zach Davies, Tyler Wilson, Miguel Chalas, Trent Howard and Devin Jones.

2012 Delmarva Shorebirds Rodriguez and Bridwell, though both young, seem fairly certain to move up to Frederick this season. Kline, a Frederick native, pitched briefly for short-season-A Aberdeen last season after being drafted out of Virginia and seems like a prime candidate to start the season in his hometown, though he could start the year as a Shorebird.

Berry, Wilson, Howard and Jones all pitched for Frederick last season and all could move up to Bowie. Davies is just 20 years old, but pitched in Delmarva all of last season, his first as a professional, and performed pretty well. Chalas has a little more professional baseball experience, but is also just 20 years old.

My guess for the Keys’ rotation on opening day, in no particular order:

  • Rodriguez
  • Kline
  • Berry
  • Bridwell
  • Howard
  • Davies

Who do you think will wind up in the rotation this season?

*KeysFest is Saturday at 11 a.m. Single-game tickets go on sale at the event at Harry Grove Stadium, which is free. The Tots2Tweens.com Egg Hunt will be held during the event and there will also be free food samples. More info here.

Shake your Keys.

Remembering Welty’s 2010 season

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A Key in 2010 and 2012, Ronnie Welty was traded to Philadelphia over the weekend.

In 2010, Keys outfielder Ronnie Welty finished among Carolina League leaders in home runs, RBIs, hits, extra-base hits, slugging percentage, runs and total bases. His 32 doubles, 86 runs and 142 hits that year all rank in the top six in Keys single-season records.

Sunday, word came down that Welty, who spent the majority of 2012 in double-A Bowie, had been traded to the Phillies for minor league pitcher Julio Rodriguez. To give Welty a proper send-off, let’s briefly revisit his 2010 season.

In 130 games, Welty hit .282, homered 18 times, drove in 82 runs, stole 11 bases and struck out a whopping 159 times. He led the Keys in hits, runs, doubles, triples (3), extra-base hits (53), homers, RBIs, total bases (234), strikeouts, slugging (.814) and OPS (.814). The Keys’ everyday right fielder finished fifth in the Carolina League in hits, extra-base hits, total bases, slugging percentage and games played (130), fourth in homers, third in RBI and second in runs. He also dubiously led the league in strikeouts.

From June 24 to July 9, Welty put together a 14-game hit streak, during which he batted .410, racked up 25 hits and drove in 12 runs. He also had a streak of 15 consecutive away games in which he reached base, hitting .385 over that span. Welty was named a mid-season and postseason Carolina League All-Star.

Welty played 13 games in Frederick last season and hit .415 with three home runs and 17 RBIs. For his Keys career, Welty hit .294 with 21 home runs, 99 RBIs, 98 runs scored and 169 strikeouts in 143 games.

Rodriguez, who has been optioned to Bowie, went 7-7 with a 4.29 ERA last season for double-A Reading

*Welty’s not the only former Key whose baseball career will not be continuing with the Orioles organization. Among the minor league cuts made at spring training this season are 2012 Key Matt Bywater and independent players Kyle Mertins and Mike Recchia, all three of whom have been or were to be featured in our countdown of potential Keys for 2013.

Here’s Bywater in Part II of the countdown, and Mertins in Part IV. Recchia has been removed from the countdown. Farewell, friends.

*MASN’s Steve Melewski sat down with O’s Director of Player Development Brian Graham. There are some interesting bits of information in here, including how the Orioles will handle their minor league pitchers.

*KeysFest is Saturday. Buy your single-game tickets when the gates open at 11 a.m. More info here.

* The Grove’s looking frosty this morning:

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*11 days until the season starts. Opening Day is almost here.

Shake Your Keys.

O’s Minor League spring training schedule starts today

Orioles minor league players start their spring training games this afternoon at 1 p.m. against Tampa Bay and Atlanta. Our man in Florida sent us a picture of the schedule, Sundays, however, did not make the photo.

So until we get a new one, here’s the minor league schedule, Monday-Saturday:

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*Believe it or not, the Keys’ opening day is just 23 days away. And Keyote is getting restless.

*For those of you who like numbers, equations, advanced statistics and things of that nature, it’s worth taking a look at this milb.com article on Minor League park factors and run environments written by Ashley Marshall. Essentially, the article takes a look at how conducive each Minor League park and league is to offense.

Based on Marshall’s findings, Harry Grove Stadium is the most neutral ballpark in the fairly low-scoring Carolina League. Since 2008, the Carolina League has averaged 4.5 runs per game, which ranks 15th among 21 leagues. Using the equation listed in the story — ((Runs scored at home + runs allowed at home)/(Home games)) / ((Runs scored on the road + runs allowed on the road)/(Road games)) — Harry Grove Stadium’s park factor based on runs scored is 1.002. A neutral park factor is 1.000, representing “an equal number of runs/homers/hits at home as on the road,” according to the story. Factors over 1.000 favor hitters and factors under 1.000 favor pitchers.

While the Grove is neutral when it comes to runs scored, its home run factor is the highest in the Carolina League at 1.689. Winston-Salem is second at 1.189. While the Grove is favorable to dingers, its overall hit rate is just .967. Read the full article here.

*The Orioles held an intrasquad game at spring training yesterday and filled out the lineups with some minor leaguers. Here’s Roch Kubatko’s notes from the game.

*In case you missed it, we released our 2013 promotional schedule yesterday. A taste: Cowboy Monkeys, Peter Bondra, Tim Kurkjian bobblehead, Man on Fire, 50-cent hot dog night. View the schedule on the Keys’ website.

*KeysFest is March 30 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Single game tickets go on sale at Keys Fest, which is just 17 days from now. All the info on the fan event, which will host the Tots2Tweens egg hunt and national anthem auditions, is here.

Shake your Keys.

Five for Friday – Schoop on Fire; O’s Reassign Players

Schoop was 3-for-6, including a three-run homer in the Dutch’s upset win over Cuba

1. Jonathan Schoop leads the Netherlands in a WBC upset

The most notable among Orioles prospects in the World Baseball Classic this year is infielder Jonathan Schoop. In last night’s 6-2 upset win over Cuba, Schoop brought the Netherlands to the brink of a semifinals berth after their impressive run in the 2009 Classic. Mixing in some great play at second base, Schoop’s three-run homer sparked the Dutch to victory.

Orioles prospect Jonathan Schoop had a three-run home run in the sixth and finished a triple away from hitting for the cycle to help bring his nation to the brink of a berth in the semifinals with a 6-2 win over Cuba in the first game of the second round on Friday at Tokyo Dome.

“It’s a great moment for our country,” Netherlands manager Hensley Meulens said. “We have the momentum on our side right now. The guys are playing great. They’re scoring first to keep the pressure off the pitching, they play great defense.”

Find the entire recap, including video of the game, here.

2. Wright, Rodriguez and de San Miguel reassigned

MASN Sports Oriole’s columnist Roch Kubatko reported that some cuts were made by the O’s yesterday and some former/future Keys were among those removed from big league camp.

Mike Wright, who went 5-2 with a 2.91 ERA in eight games in Frederick this season, was reassigned to minor league camp after three appearances with the O’s in spring training. Through those three games, Wright compiled a 5.14 ERA over seven innings of work. After an injury plagued year in Double-A (5-3, 4.91), Wright will likely see time with the Baysox again to start the season.  O’s manager Buck Showalter was impressed at what he saw from the young farm-hand.

“Very similar stuff (to Rodriguez), except we just want to get him back on track,” Showalter said. “He was a good-looking pitcher last year when he left here. Still have some high hopes for him. We had some periods where he got out of whack last year. Good to see him finish on a high note today.”

Eduardo Rodriguez (19), a potential Key for 2013 and a top pitching prospect behind Bundy and Gausman, saw some time for the O’s in an intrasquad game and the exhibition game again Spain, where he pitched a scoreless inning. It seems likely he will don a Keys uniform this season, after appearing in a game late last season in Frederick. He went 5-7 with a 3.70 ERA for the Low-A Shorebirds in 2012. Buck shed some light on the 19-year old prospect after his short time with the big club.

“Just being around the atmosphere here, and a little bit of the professionalism and kind of what’s got to go on, that was really what I wanted him to get more than anything else. That was a common denominator I was getting back from our people below. That’s something he needed. He needed to really see routine, things like that.”

Catcher Allan de San Miguel was also reassigned. He saw time in the Austrailian League with the Perth Heat and with the Australian World Baseball Classic team, before they were knocked out by Schoop’s Netherlands team. He did not register a hit in four at-bats in the WBC but did hit .294 with five homers and 30 RBI for the Perth Heat, who fell just short of their second title in as many years. San Miguel spent 2012 with the Keys and Baysox, where he hit .239 combined.

For the entire article on the O’s spring training cuts, including more quotes on prospects from Showalter, click here.

3. 22 days until KeysFest

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On March 30th from 11am-2pm, the Keys will be holding a fan-focused event that is free to the public. The biggest aspect of this event is the release of single game tickets to the public. One different part of the event this year is the addition of the 4th Annual Tots2Tweens Egg Hunt. The Keys and Tots 2 Tweens have partnered this year to make KeysFest extra special. The first 500 fans through the gates will receive goody bags and kids will get their chance to take pictures with the “Bunny” along with Keys mascots Keyote and Frank Key. Vendors will be all over the concourse and there will be food sampling, custom baseball cards and more!

For the complete press release on KeysFest, click here.

Think you are talented enough to sing the National Anthem at a game? Pre-register today and audition at KeysFest! The form can be found here and can be mailed, e-mailed or faxed.

4. Teeing off with the Newsletter

This week’s edition of the Keys newsletter, including the first information on the annual charity golf tournament can be found here. Never heard of the Keys Care Charity Golf Tournament? Check out last year’s video feature below.

The 2010 highlight video can be found here.

5. Link it up!

Miss any of our Top 10 Promo Countdown? Check it out here and stay tuned for the #1 Promotion today at 4pm.

The fifth part of our possible 2013 Keys players is out – read it here.

In Britt Ghiroli’s latest Orioles post, Manny Machado talks about his high spring workload.

In case you missed it, there was some Orioles magic in yesterday’s game against the Blue Jays. See Ryan Flaherty’s walk-off bomb over the fence in right field by clicking here.

Is your kid a member of the Jr. Keys Club? If so, we are holding a Kickoff Picnic! For complete details, click here.

Our weekly Former Frederick Friday contest takes place this afternoon, so head over to our Facebook page for that.

Only 28 days until Opening Day at ‘The Grove’!

Have a good weekend and Shake Your Keys!

KEYSFEST SET FOR APRIL 2ND

 

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 Frederick Keys News Release

KEYSFEST SET FOR APRIL 2ND

National Anthem auditions to take place during exciting day at Harry Grove Stadium

Frederick, MD – The Frederick Keys are pleased to announce the date for KeysFest 2011 at Harry Grove Stadium presented by Buffalo Wild Wings. The FREE event will take place on April 2nd from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. while National Anthem auditions will be held from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. on the field.

KeysFest will be packed with fun activities for all ages. Not only do single game tickets go on sale but there will be plenty of free food and great games for families to participate in all day. If you have any questions about KeysFest, please call 1-877-GO-KEYS or email info@frederickkeys.com.

KeysFest 2011 will unlock many great activities:

         National Anthem auditions from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

         Stadium tours

         Fun Zone will be open and FREE

         On-field games for fans (12pm)

         Catch on the field (12pm)

         Run the Bases (12pm)

         Keyote & Frank Key autograph table

         Jr. Keys Kids Club activity/coloring table

         Raffles & auctions for many great prizes

         Keys merchandise specials

         Face Painting & Balloon Animals

         Single game tickets will also be available for purchase starting at 9 a.m. on April 2nd

 

Food items include:

         Various free samples provided by Buffalo Wild Wings

         Free samples of Nick’s Sausages (Andouille Sausage and Pepper & Onion Sausage)

         Free samples of Pretzel Bites from J&J Pretzels

         Free samples of Mt. Musser Kettle Corn

         Free samples of Dietz & Watson Hot Dogs

         Free soda and popcorn to the first 500 fans through the gates

         Free Rita’s Ices to the first 200 fans (weather permitting)

         Dugout Dogs, Brewers Alley, and the Angus Grill will be selling food and beer

         The stadium store will be open for everyone to purchase Keys gear!

-http://www.frederickkeys.com-

Opening Day 2011 is Tuesday, April 12th when the Keys take on the Myrtle Beach Pelicans at 7 p.m. at Harry Grove Stadium. For information on ticket plans contact the Keys Group Offices at 301-815-9900 or via the web at frederickkeys.com.

Contact: Brandon Apter, 301-815-9919

 

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