DL Hall finally found his footing for Frederick.The third-ranked Orioles prospect picked up his first Class A Advanced victory, allowing one hit and striking out eight over five innings as the Keys blanked Winston-Salem, 7-0, on Friday night at BB&T Ballpark.
DL Hall finally found his footing for Frederick.
The third-ranked Orioles prospect picked up his first Class A Advanced victory, allowing one hit and striking out eight over five innings as the Keys blanked Winston-Salem, 7-0, on Friday night at BB&T Ballpark.
Hall (1-0) retired eight batters in a row in between a first-inning walk by Jameson Fisher and Fisher's single in the fourth. The left-hander struck out the side in the fifth.
Gameday box score
MLB.com's No. 85 overall prospect struggled with control in his first three Carolina League starts, totaling nine walks over 10 innings. He was better against the Dash as he threw 49 of 76 pitches for strikes and walked only Fisher.
Hall looked at the bright side of the early-season frustrations.
"It's definitely hard, but I think going through those situations like that early in the year definitely makes you bear down and work a little bit harder," he told the Baltimore Sun. "You try and stay even-keeled and not get too low and not get too high either, in the good moments."
Frederick pitching coach Justin Lord, who worked with Hall at Class A Delmarva in 2018, has seen the 20-year-old lefty mature before his own eyes.
"Last year, you saw a good arm," Lord told the paper. "You saw the stuff. But this year, he's got more command of that stuff. ... He's a little bit more polished than he was this time last year, and you see a guy that's got better preparation habits than he had this time last year, so you see some of the maturity, some of the growth, some of the development that you're looking for."
Adding a consistent slider to his repertoire has given Hall an extra option for batters to be concerned about.
"I think it's huge to have that extra pitch," he told the Sun. "It came along a lot more last year because I struggled with my curveball last year, so I think having that slider this year is definitely going to help me out -- especially on the days that my curveball is struggling, just to be able to have three pitches when one of them is not working versus having two if one is not working."
Hall, a 2017 first-round pick, seemingly saved his best stuff for No. 4 White Sox prospectLuis Robert, striking him out twice in as many at-bats.
In the South Atlantic League last year, the Georgia native held opponents to a .203 average while compiling a 2.10 ERA and striking out 100 over 94 1/3 innings.
Luis Perez was almost as impressive in relief, allowing two hits while fanning seven over the final four innings for his second save.
Zach Jarrett and Jomar Reyes both had three hits for the Keys, with Reyes driving in two runs and scoring three times. Mason McCoy singled twice and scored twice out of the leadoff spot.
Brian Stultz is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @brianjstultz.