Third baseman Drew Dosch’s consistent 2014 took a back seat to some of the other hitters at Delmarva, but after a slow start for High-A Frederick this year, the 2013 seventh-round pick is among the best performing regulars for the Keys, who are tied atop their division at 8-6.
Dosch began the season 4-for-32 before doubling his hit total in a single game April 17 against Wilmington, and he’s raised his line to .275/.356/.451 with as many RBIs as he has hits (14).
The slow start was only noticeable in that it happened early in the season — Dosch’s .314/.379/.404 line a year ago in Delmarva showed he could be a consistent producer at his level. And he did that with his high-round pedigree somewhat masked because of a knee injury right before the June 2013 draft that caused him to slide a few rounds.
That the Orioles took a chance on him right after he tore his knee up meant a lot to Dosch, and he’s done nothing but produce since then.
In a Frederick lineup that might have to piece together its offense, Dosch’s bat will be a constant force, one complemented by his strong defense at third base.
Hess, Horacek still shoving
As recounted in this space a week ago, the diverse arms atop the Keys’ rotation — Mitch Horacek and David Hess — are off to hot starts, and that continued in the last turn through the rotation.
The left-hander Horacek allowed two runs in 5 2/3 innings on Monday, striking out eight and picking up his second win of the season. His 20 strikeouts on the season are second in the Carolina League, and second-most in the organization behind Bowie's Parker Bridwell, who has 22.
Hess, who is tied for fourth in the league with 14 strikeouts, struck out a career-high eight batters Tuesday, and got through five scoreless innings before three runs scored in the sixth to give him his first loss of the season.
With their strong starts already established, the next test for each will be the second time through the Carolina League, when lineups get familiar with them and have chances to adjust. I like both of their chances to power through that and reach Bowie at some point this year.
Early injury bug
My apologies to center fielder Josh Hart, who I’ve probably seen play six games in the last two years, with two of those games ending in injury for him.
Last year, it was a knee injury chasing down a ball in the gap over Memorial Day weekend. Then last week, Hart injured his shoulder making a play in the alley again. He’s still on the disabled list, as of Thursday afternoon.
Catcher Chance Sisco returned from a brief DL stint with a fractured finger, and has a pair of singles in two games back. Sisco hit .341/.417/.442 last year with Delmarva.