FREDERICK, MD-Cristian Alvarado fired seven innings of two-run baseball to help lead the Frederick Keys (43-53, 8-19) to a 4-2 victory over the Down East Wood Ducks (44-53, 9-18) on Wednesday night. It was Alvarado's 12th quality start of the year, and marked his sixth start of seven innings or more.
Earning the win, the right-hander allowed two runs in the second inning but nothing more. Alvarado (9-7) scattered seven hits over his seven frames while striking out eight. The eight strikeouts tied a season-high, which he has now done three times.
Cole Billingsley started the scoring for the Keys in the second. After T.J. Nichting doubled to lead off the frame, Jomar Reyes was hit by a pitch and Jake Ring earned a bunt base hit to load the bases. Wood Ducks starter Walker Weickel struck out the next two batters before Billingsley cleared the bases with a double to center field.
The Wood Ducks responded with two runs in the top of the second. With one out, Down East strung together four straight hits. LeDarious Clark and Leody Taveras hit back-to-back doubles, while Andretty Cordero brought in Taveras with a single to make it 3-2 Keys.
Frederick added a run in the bottom of the inning. Preston Palmeiro launched his 12th home run of the season to right-center field. That ended the scoring for each team, as both pitching staffs fired blanks over the remaining six frames.
Weickel (1-8) took the loss. The right-hander allowed four runs on eight hits over six innings. He walked two and struck out two. Tyler Erwin picked up his 10th save for the Keys. After Matt Trowbridge fired a scoreless eighth inning, Erwin struck out the side in the ninth.
The Keys and Wood Ducks continue their series on Thursday night. Left-hander Alex Wells (3-6, 4.13) takes the mound for the Keys. He will be opposed by Wood Ducks left-hander Joe Palumbo (0-1, 0.00). First pitch is slated for 7:00 p.m., and the game can be heard on frederickkeys.com and the TuneIn Radio app. For tickets, fans can call 301-815-9939 or visit frederickkeys.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.