Lynchburg pitching shines in 5-1 win over Frederick
The Hillcats shut down the Keys for the second straight day, winning 5-1 at Harry Grove Stadium. Lynchburg’s pitching limited the Keys to just three hits on the afternoon, while second baseman Tommy La Stella delivered the big hit with a three-run home run in the fifth inning.
Lynchburg struck first with four singles up the middle in the top of the first inning. Center fielder started the rally with a leadoff single. With one out, La Stella and left fielder Evan Gattis both singled to load the bases for third baseman Edward Salcedo. Salcedo hit a chopper up the middle for yet another single. Lipka and La Stella both scored to make it 2-0 Hillcats.
The Keys got on the board in the third inning. Catcher Joe Oliveira hit his first home run of the season. His solo shot brought Frederick within one, 2-1 Hillcats. It was the first hit given up of the day for Lynchburg’s starter RHP Cody Martin.
The Hillcats extended their lead in the fifth inning. Back-to-back Frederick errors put runners at first and second with nobody out. Shortstop Nick Ahmed struck swinging before La Stella stepped up to the plate. La Stella hit a high fly ball to left field that carried over the wall for a three-run home run. It was his second of the season, and the three RBI give him 18 this year. Lynchburg went up 5-1.
Martin continued to pitch through the sixth inning. He struck out at least one batter in each the first four innings, and finished with seven strikeouts, which matched his career-high.
Frederick tried to get something going in the eighth inning. RHP Caleb Brewer surrendered a leadoff double and then walked a batter to put runners on at first and second with nobody out. It was the first time in the game that two runners had reached base simultaneously for the Keys. Brewer went on to get a line out to center field and a 6-3 double play to get out of the inning unscathed.
It remained 5-1 HIllcats heading into the ninth inning. RHP Ryan Weber threw a perfect final frame and the Hillcats recorded their 12th win of the season. Lynchburg is now 12-8 and remain in first place in the Carolina League Northern Division.
Tomorrow, the series finale between the Hillcats and Keys is set for a 2:00pm first pitch. RHP Gus Schlosser (2-0, 5.04 ERA) will start for Lynchburg against RHP Scott Copeland (1-0, 1.83) for the Keys. The Hillcats On-Deck Show will go on the air at 1:40pm. Listen live to all the action on 105.5 FM KD Country and online at lynchburg-hillcats.com