LYNCHBURG, VA-The Frederick Keys started quickly on offense and used another strong start from Alex Wells to top the Lynchburg Hillcats 8-3 on Friday night at City Stadium. With the victory, the visitors ended the Hillcats six-game winning streak.
Wasting little time, the Keys (58-64, 23-30) scored three times in the first off Eli Morgan and sent eight to bat. With two on, Randolph Gassaway hit an RBI double off the rightfield wall and Jomar Reyes followed with an RBI single to make it 2-0. Two batters later, Chris Clare singled home the game's first run.
In the fourth, the Keys added four more runs with two outs. Benefitting from an error by first baseman Emmanuel Tapia, Frederick added one more baserunner before Preston Palmeiro and Wilson Garcia slugged back-to-back home runs to end Morgan's night. It is the second time this month the Keys have hit back-to-back homers, while the duo of Palmeiro and Garcia have combined for 36 deep flies this year.
That would be plenty of support for Wells (6-7) who retired the first 13 he faced en route to his second win in three starts. Pitching into the seventh once again, the lefty allowed three runs on four hits in 6.2 innings. He struck out six and did not walk a batter.
All three Lynchburg (61-59, 32-21) runs came home in the seventh on two home runs. Mitch Longo started the frame with a solo blast before Dillon Persinger smacked a two-run shot later in the inning.
Morgan (7-6) was tagged with the loss giving up seven runs (three earned) on seven hits in 3.2 innings. He walked two and struck out two.
On Saturday, the Keys and Hillcats play the middle game of the series. Right-hander Michael Baumann (7-3. 4.04) starts for Frederick and will be opposed by left-hander Kirk McCarty (0-0, 0.00). First pitch is at 6:00 p.m and the broadcast can be heard on frederickkeys.com and the TuneIn App.
The Keys return to Nymeo Field from Friday, August 24-Sunday, August 26 when the Carolina Mudcats come to town. Homestand highlights include Alzheimer's Awareness Night, Scout Night presented by Wegman's, Game of Thrones Night and Prince and Princess Day to go with two fireworks shows. For tickets, fans can call the Keys at 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.