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Keys take down Salem … again

For the tenth straight time in 2011, the Keys defeated the Red Sox in a Carolina League baseball game.

On Tuesday night, Jake Pettit set the pace, tossing six strong innings to lead Frederick past Salem 7-1, continuing the Keys’ string of dominance over the Sox. The defeat was Salem’s seventh straight heading into Wednesday’s series finale, where the Sox will hope that Anthony Ranaudo can serve as the stopper to help halt the skid.

For the second straight evening, the Red Sox scored in the first inning and never again in the ballgame. Bryce Brentz’ sac fly drove in Kolbrin Vitek to give Salem a 1-0 edge, an advantage that remained only until the third.

Salem starter Drake Britton struck out the side in the first and retired the Keys in order on just seven pitches in the second, but once again experience heavy turbulence in multiple innings and suffered the loss. Keys catcher Justin Dalles crushed his first Carolina League homer to lead off the third for Frederick, tying the game at one. Frederick added two more runs to take a 3-1 lead, scoring on Jonathan Schoop’s RBI single and Manny Machado’s RBI double. Britton struck out three more batters in the third inning, but the three runs allowed dampened the performance.

In the top of the fourth, five of the first six batters reached to knock Britton out of the game after three and two-thirds innings. Dalles and Bobby Stevens each drove in a run with an RBI single, surging the Keys to a 5-1 lead and chasing Britton from the mound. The Sox lefty fell to 1-9 and his ERA climbed to 7.35, allowing five runs on seven hits on Tuesday evening. In relief, Jeremiah Bayer matched a season high with four and a third innings pitched out of the pen, yielding two runs on four hits, while Kendal Volz dealt a scoreless ninth for Salem.

Frederick’s Pettit improved to 2-0 in his young Carolina League career, allowing just one tally on five hits over six frames for the Keys. Ryan O’Shea entered in the seventh and pitched a pair of scoreless innings, while Jason Gurka slammed the door in the ninth.

The bottom third of Frederick’s lineup—Justin Dalles, Kipp Schutz, and Bobby Stevens—combined to go 6-11 with four runs scored and four RBI, pacing the Keys offensively. Jorge Padron led the Red Sox with three hits, including two doubles, while Vitek mustered two singles for his 30th multi-hit game of the season.

Wednesday’s series finale brings a matchup of two former SEC hurlers who both pitched in the College World Series. Salem sends Ranaudo to the mound for his ninth start with the Sox, while Frederick presents Nathan Moreau, who currently leads the league in wins and tossed a no-hitter for Frederick at LewisGale Field on June 30, 2010. First pitch is set for 7:05, as the Sox seek to squelch their seven-game losing streak.

augusta free press
augusta free press