Zach Davies provided his best start of the season just when his team needed it. Losers of their last four, the Frederick Keys beat Wilmington 7-3 Monday night in front of 3,806 at Harry Grove Stadium, avoiding a four-game sweep.
Davies made the longest start of any Keys pitcher this season, going 7.1 innings and allowing just two runs, both coming on Alex Hudak's eighth-inning homer. Davies (3-2) won his second straight start, allowed four hits, walked two and struck out four.
Zane Chavez and Nicky Delmonico provided all the offense the Keys would need Monday night, Chavez driving in single runs in the first, third and fifth and Delmonico homering for the second game in a row after returning from the disabled list. Chavez's RBI single off Wilmington starter Sam Selman in the first gave the Keys (19-17) a 1-0 advantage and Jerome Pena's single put Frederick ahead by a pair. Chavez followed with an RBI double to left, which is also how he put Frederick ahead 4-0 in the fifth. Delmonico then provided his fourth homer of the season, a two-run shot off reliever Antonio Cruz who had just replaced Selman.
Selman (1-3) took the loss allowing five runs, four earned, on four hits while walking five and striking out five.
Tempers flared after Cruz hit Pena in the bottom of the seventh and both benches cleared, but no players were ejected nor were any punches thrown.
Johnny Ruettiger drove in the Keys final run with an infield single in the eighth and Wilmington (17-20) scored a run off Marcel Prado in the ninth, an RBI single by Jack Lopez.
Chavez finished 2-for-4 with 3 RBIs and Glynn Davis had a pair of hits for the Keys. Delmonico's only two hits since returning from a concussion that caused him to miss three weeks have been home runs.
The Keys hit the road for a three game series with Lynchburg tomorrow. Eduardo Rodriguez will start for Frederick and James Hoyt for the Hillcats with first pitch slated for 6:05 p.m.. The Keys return home Tuesday, May 21 against Potomac. For tickets, buy online at frederickkeys.com, by phone at 301-815-9939 or visit the Keys box office at Harry Grove Stadium.