‘Cats blast past Keys

In a tie game in the eighth, the Hillcats were looking for someone to come up with a big hit to take the lead. Geraldo Rodriguez provided the power, hitting a two-run home run to give the Hillcats a 5-3 win over the Frederick Keys Wednesday night.

Two Keys came across the plate in the top of the fourth inning to give Frederick an early lead. The first run scored on a sacrifice fly by Kipp Schutz. Justin Dalles followed two batters later with an RBI single.

Keenan Wiley and L.V. Ware led off the bottom of the fifth with back-to-back singles. Marcus Lemon grounded into a fielders choice, putting runners on the corners with one out. Andrelton Simmons hit a shallow fly ball to right field that was too short to advance the runners. With two outs, Phil Gosselin hit a double to right field, scoring both runners and tying the game. Joey Terdoslavich followed with a single. Gosselin scored to put the Hillcats up 3-2, and when the throw came home, Terdoslavich tried to advance to second. The throw from Dalles was a bit high but Manny Machado was able to place the tag on a sliding Terdoslavich for the third out. Terdoslavich disagreed with the call, and when he argued his point to base umpire Carlos Torres, he was ejected.

The lead did not hold up long. With two outs in the sixth inning, Miguel Abreu launched a solo home run over the left-center field wall to tie the game at three.

The game remained 3-3 until the bottom of the eighth inning. After the first two batters struck out, Christian Bethancourt was able to draw a walk against reliever Clay Schrader. Geraldo Rodriguez followed with a mammoth blast over the scoreboard in left-center. It put the Hillcats ahead 5-3, and it was the first run Schrader (1-1) had let up since April 19 when he was with the Low-A Delmarva Shorrebirds.

Ryan Buchter came in to close the game out in the ninth. He hit the first batter he faced, then struck out the next three in a row to earn his fifth save of the year.

Eliecer Cardenas (2-1) earned the win after pitching a perfect eighth inning. The Hillcats improved to 2-4 in the second half, while the Keys fell to 3-4.

The homestand continues Thursday night as the Keys and Hillcats face off again. Lefty Blaine Sims (2-1) will take the mound for Lynchburg, and Frederick will counter with fellow southpaw Nick Haughian (4-4). First pitch is at 7:05 pm, and the gates open at 6.

The Hillcats On-Deck Show presented by Honda/Suzuki of Lynchburg will go on the air at 6:40 pm. Tune in to 105.5 KD Country or go to lynchburg-hillcats.com to listen live to all the action.

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