(Woodbridge, VA) Ryan Zimmerman goes 2-3 in his second rehab start, as the P-Nats fall 8-1 to the Frederick Keys on Monday Night at Pfitzner Stadium.
The Nationals All-Star third baseman - recovering from a torn abdominal muscle - doubled and singled in his first two at-bats. Combine that with his 2-2 performance Sunday afternoon at Hagerstown and Zimmerman was a perfect 4-4 to start his rehab assignment. He snapped the streak in the bottom of the 6th with a pop up to center field. Zimmerman didn't see a lot of action at third base, but took care of the two groundballs he did see - one off the bat of Bobby Stevens to end the top of the 4th, and one from Jonathan Scope to end the top of the 7th.
The rest of the Potomac's (22-34) offense was held in check by Keys (34-22) starter Bobby Bundy. The only run came on a solo home run by Justin Bloxom in the bottom of the sixth. The 23-year-old turned on a fastball and hit his fourth homer of the season to deep right-center field.
Potomac was able to scattered six hits off the righty, but Bundy shut them down whenever a threat started to build. The biggest threat that Bundy squashed was in the fourth inning. Zimmerman and Bloxom led off with back-to-back singles. But a double-play by Destin Hood ended the momentum.
In a unique twist to Bobby Bundy's night, his younger brother, Dylan, was taken by the Baltimore Orioles (the Keys parent club) with the fourth overall pick in the MLB Draft.
Potomac starter Trevor Holder struggled in the second, when he gave up five runs, but was able to settle down. The two big hits in the key inning for Frederick were a two-run triple by Steve Bumbry and a two-run home run by Tyler Townsend. Townsend now has 37 RBI on the season, which is fourth in the Carolina League. The first baseman also leads the league in batting average at .320.
Defense was on display for both teams Monday night. Both pitchers snared line drives up the middle and took away base hits. Keys shortstop Jonathon Schoop made a sliding stop on the outfield grass, popped to his feet and fired to first for the out. And then the P-Nats middle infield topped all of them. With the Keys speedy lead-off hitter Trent Mummey on first base, Bobby Stevens hit a ground ball just to the right of the second. Jeff Kobernus dove head first, grabbed the grounder and flipped it with his glove to shortstop Jose Lozada. Lozada caught the flip barehanded and completed the relay to first base for the double play.
The lose snaps Potomac's four-game winning streak. On the flip side, Frederick stays red-hot. The Keys have won six in a row and remain in first place in the Carolina League Northern Division.
The second game of this four-game series starts at 7:05 on Tuesday evening from the Pfitz. It features Paul Demny (2-5, 4.50) starting for the P-Nats, and Nathan Moreau (5-3, 3.76) going for the Keys.