Keys and P-Nats Split Doubleheader
WOODBRIGDE, VA - It was a tale of two offenses as the Frederick Keys (9-19, 38-59) split Thursday's doubleheader with the Potomac Nationals (13-14, 43-51) at Northwest Federal Field. The Keys took game one 8-3 behind home runs from Cadyn Grenier, Patrick Dorrian, and Jomar Reyes while the offense mustered just four hits and one run in game two, dropping a 4-1 contest at the hands of Luis Reyes. Luis Perez and Diogenes Almengo combined for 5.1 shutout innings out of the bullpen. The Keys are now 2-3-8 in twin bills this season.
Game one did not start off on the right foot for David Lebron, whose throwing error on a swinging bunt sailed into the P-Nats bullpen. Cole Freeman, who was on first, did not break stride around the bases and ended up scoring on the play. Lebron then walked a pair of batters to load the bases but got Gilbert Lara to strike out on three pitches.
Grenier did not take long to make a good first impression. In his first Carolina League game, the shortstop drilled the second pitch he saw around the left field foul pole to tie the game up 1-1.
The Keys put runners in scoring position in the second and third inning but did not strike big until the fourth.
After J.C. Escarra singled and stole second base, Trevor Craport lined a double off the left-field wall to give the Keys a 2-1 lead. Two pitches later, Dorrian ripped a two-run shot to right field, his second with Frederick. The Keys put two more on but had two-outs. With Reyes down to his final strike, he crushed a pitch well beyond the left-field wall to give the Keys a 7-1 lead and cap off a six-run inning.
All seven runs were charged to Malvin Pena (5-6), who gave up eight hits in just 3.2 innings.
The P-Nats came storming back in the bottom half of the inning. They recorded five singles, scored a pair of runs to make it 7-3 and loaded the bases with one-out against Lebron. The right-hander buckled down and got Jakson Reetz to pop-out and struck out KJ Harrison on a high fastball to end the inning.
Perez (4-1) was outstanding in relief of Lebron. He faced one over the minimum and struck out a pair in three scoreless innings.
In game two, the Keys took a 1-0 lead in the third inning thanks to a Daniel Fajardo RBI groundout. He scored Kirvin Moesquit, who hit a sinking line-drive into centerfield that Gage Canning dove for. He came up empty handed, and Moesquit made it all the way to third base.
Blaine Knight looked dominant for the Keys his first time through the order. He struck out a pair of batters and although he gave up a lead-off walk to start the fourth inning, he recorded two quick outs including a three-pitch strikeout.
That's when things went south for Knight. Harrison worked a tough at-bat that resulted in a punch single against the shift and Lara grounded a slow roller back up the middle that stayed in the infield. That loaded the bases for Omar Meregildo. The third baseman lined a 2-1 pitch into the right-field corner to bring home two runs. Canning laced the first pitch he saw down the line and cleared the bases with a triple to make it a 4-1 lead for the P-Nats.
Knight (0-7) could not recover after that as he walked the next batter on four pitches. He was dealt the loss after allowing four runs on six hits after he struck out three in 3.2 innings.
Meanwhile, Reyes (2-5) shut down the Keys offense. He allowed the lone run on three hits and struck out three in five innings of work.
Almengo was excellent in relief of Knight. He struck out four batters in 2.1 scoreless frames.
The Keys brought the tying run to the plate in the seventh inning but were Jhonathan German (S, 5) retired the final two batters.
The Keys and P-Nats are set to square off in a rubber match on Friday, July 19 before heading to Lynchburg. LHP DL Hall (3-3, 3.57) takes the mound for Frederick opposite LHP Carson Teel (3-2, 3.9i0) for Potomac. First pitch for game one is scheduled 7:05pm, with pregame coverage starting at 6:50pm on frederickkeys.com and the Tune In radio app.
The Frederick Keys are the Advanced-A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, and play their home games at Nymeo Field at Harry Grove Stadium. Following the 2018 season, the Keys were named the winner of the Carolina League's Complete Franchise Award. This goes to a team in the league which demonstrates franchise stability and significant contributions to its community and the league. In 2019, the team will host the Carolina League All-Star Classic presented by Visit Frederick. For more information about the Frederick Keys please contact Geoff Arnold by phone at (301)-815-9915 or by emailing at GArnold@FrederickKeys.com.
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