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Steady Frederick Keys finally explode at the plate

Class-A Frederick doesn’t have major league veterans leading the offense like Norfolk, or nearly an entire lineup of players batting over .300 like Bowie, but the offense came alive this week without many standout contributors.

The Keys scored 19 runs combined in wins Tuesday and Wednesday against Potomac, more than their previous five games combined, and broke a streak of nine straight games of not exceeding four runs.

Outfielder Brenden Webb, infielder Creede Simpson, and infielder Jerome Pena each homered in the two-game explosion, but most of the Keys offense has been driven by outfielders Glynn Davis and Lucas Herbst.

Herbst, a 26th round pick in the 2012 MLB draft, is batting .322/.374/.433 with a home run and 13 RBI for the Keys. Davis, a Baltimore native, is down to .343/.410/.464 after a hot April, and has 12 extra-base hits and 15 RBI on the year.

Top of Frederick rotation remains strong

Branden Kline and Matt Taylor have already been featured in this space this season, so we won’t go too deep on them. But despite still leading the rotation in innings and ERA, Taylor and Kline experienced more trouble than usual in their last starts. With 7 1/3 shutout innings on May 9, Taylor had his fifth outing without an earned run out of his first seven. But he allowed nine hits and five earned runs in five innings on Wednesday in a 12-5 win over Potomac. He’s been pitching to contact, with just 15 strikeouts in 46 1/3 innings, but has a 1.94 ERA on the year.

Kline also had a minor setback in his most recent start, making it just four innings and allowing four runs on six hits and three walks. His ERA is 2.68 in eight starts.

Bridwell nears no-hitter

On Tuesday night, I recounted what was an impressive night of pitching in the system. Frederick left-hander Parker Bridwell headlined that, carrying a no-hitter into the ninth inning of the Keys’ 7-0 win. I haven’t had a look at Bridwell, so at the risk of box-score scouting, I’ll say the result was an anomaly, given he entered into the game with an ERA over six.

But Bridwell has always had the potential, if not the command, to succeed. We’ll see if he can build on this.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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