Blake Wood turned in his best start of the season on Wednesday afternoon, but left the game in line for the loss. Fortunately, his teammates made sure that didn't happen.
Joe Dickerson hit an RBI double and scored the game's winning run as the Wilmington Blue Rocks rallied for a 2-1 walk-off victory over the Frederick Keys.
Wood struck out a career-high 10 batters over 6 2/3 two-hit innings, but left the game on the losing end of a 1-0 deficit. The 22-year-old right-hander retired the first 15 batters he faced in the ballgame, but yielded a run in the sixth when Brandon Snyder doubled to lead off the frame, and later came around to score on Daniel Figueroa's infield single.
Keys starter Jake Arrieta, a 2007 fifth-round Draft pick, turned in his best start of the season as well, as the Missouri native scattered two hits and three walks over seven shutout innings while striking out eight batters. Arrieta now leads the Carolina League in both strikeouts (40) and innings pitched (32 2/3).
Wilfredo Perez (0-1) came on in relief of Arrieta and pitched a scoreless eighth before running into trouble in the ninth. Derrick Robinson singled to lead off the frame, and scored on Dickerson's game-tying double to right field.
"It was nice to get a pitch I could handle, something I could drive into the wind and let it carry out there," said Dickerson in a postgame interview with WWTX radio. "It's not too often the wind is blowing in that direction, so it was a good feeling."
Dickerson's double chased Perez from the ballgame. Jason Burch came on and promptly uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Dickerson to advance to third. Kurt Merkins then lofted a sacrifice fly to right field that plated Dickerson with the game's winning run.
"It was big for us to come back for [Wood], he really needed that," said Dickerson. "He pitched his heart out there, and definitely didn't deserve to get the loss in that game. I'm glad it came out the way it did."
Chambliss (1-0) pitched 2 1/3 scoreless frames in relief of Wood and earned the win.