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Potomac swept in doubleheader by Keys

The only thing that was the same from one game to the other in Sunday’s doubleheader between the Potomac Nationals (62-77, 29-41) and the Frederick Keys (68-70, 37-32) was that the Keys picked up the victory both times. Frederick ran away with a game one rout 10-4, and held on in a tight 2-0 battle in game two.

p-natsGame one got off to a dreadful start for Potomac, as the Keys batted around in the bottom of the first inning and took a 5-0 lead against LHP Taylor Guilbeau (L, 4-5). CF Glynn Davis made it 1-0 with an RBI double, C Armando Araiza increased the lead to three runs with a two-run double, 3B Jomar Reyes made it 4-0 Frederick with an RBI single, while LF Randolph Gassaway hit a solo home run, as the Keys led 5-0 seven batters into the game.

Things didn’t get better in the second inning for Potomac, as Guilbeau allowed three more runs and recorded just one out. 2B Brallan Perez hit a one-out triple, Guilbeau hit DH Ademar Rifaela with a pitch, while Davis drew a walk, which loaded the bases. That was it for Guilbeau, who went a season-low 1.1 innings in his 15th start of the year. RHP Mariano Rivera III entered with the bases loaded and gave up an RBI single to Araiza and a two-run double to Gassaway, which made it 8-0 Frederick. That closed the book on Guilbeau, who was charged with a season-high eight earned runs.

A half an inning later, Potomac got back into the game and cut the deficit in half. CF Jack Sundberg doubled with one out against LHP Reid Love (W, 6-4), 1B Ian Sagdal walked, while SS David Masters got Potomac on the scoreboard with an RBI single. C Jakson Reetz followed with a three-run home run, as Potomac trailed 8-4 after 2.5 innings. The P-Nats got just two hits after that and sent only two men over the minimum to the plate over the final four frames.

The Keys wrapped up the scoring in game one with a pair of runs against Rivera in the fifth inning, though both were unearned. 1B Shane Hoelscher reached on a fielding error by 3B Bryan Mejia, his second error in as many frames. RF Jake Ring, in his first Carolina League game, followed with a two-run home run, as the Keys led 10-4 after five innings. RHP Jefri Hernandez walked a man and gave up a hit over two innings of shutout relief to close the game.

In game two, the Keys scored in only one frame, and had a man reach base in just three of their six trips to the plate. RHP Austen Williams (L, 2-5) worked a perfect first inning, but allowed the first four batters to reach in the second frame. The first three Frederick hitters singled, as Reyes’ RBI base hit made it 1-0. After Williams walked Ring and loaded the bases, C Stuart Levy made it 2-0 with an RBI groundout. Williams then retired 10 of the next 12 batters that he faced, as he departed for LHP Jordan Mills after six innings.

The Potomac offense had chances early against RHP Matthew Grimes (W, 1-2). DH Daniel Johnson led off the game with a single, while Sagdal had a base hit two batters later. Despite the two hits, Potomac failed to score. In the second inning, both 2B Jake Noll and C Matt Reistetter singled, but even though the P-Nats had men at first and second with no outs, they could not to score. SS Edwin Lora tried to put down a sacrifice bunt, but it went right back to Grimes, who got the lead runner at third base. After that, Mejia grounded into an inning-ending double play. Grimes allowed just one baserunner over his final three innings, while LHP Luis Gonzalez worked a perfect sixth frame, and RHP Mike Burke (SV, 3) retired the side in order in the seventh and secured the victory.

With the doubleheader sweep, the Keys have won six straight, while Potomac has dropped a season-high six consecutive games.

Looking to avoid a second straight sweep to end the season, Potomac will turn to RHP Jefry Rodriguez (3-3, 3.18) on Monday afternoon. Rodriguez has allowed just two runs in 10 innings since he returned from a stint with the GCL Nationals on 8/16. For the Keys, RHP Ofelky Peralta (2-10, 5.58) will make his 26th start of the season. Peralta is winless in his last nine starts, but has a 4.73 ERA in that span.

First pitch on Monday is set for 2:00pm. The Potomac broadcast will get underway at 1:45pm with the P-Nats Leadoff Show. You can listen to the Potomac broadcast at or on the TuneIn Radio App.