Davies posts six more zeros for Baysox

Orioles' No. 12 prospect extends scoreless streak to 19 innings

Zach Davies has given up only five hits during his 19-inning scoreless streak. (Patrick Cavey/Bowie Baysox)

By Mark Emery / MiLB.com | June 28, 2014 1:21 AM

Zach Davies is riding the type of hot streak that makes opposing pitchers jealous and opposing hitters nervous.

The reigning Eastern League Pitcher of the Week turned in his third straight scoreless outing Friday when he blanked Double-A Richmond over six innings as Bowie took the opener of a doubleheader, 5-1. He allowed two hits, struck out nine and did not issue a walk.

"For me, my focus these last few starts has just been on going deep into games, not walking too many guys," Davies said. "The scoreless [streak], it's just happened. My focus has been on just getting deep into games and keeping us in the game, making sure that I help out the bullpen as much as possible."

Over his last three starts, the Orioles' No. 12 prospect has thrown 19 innings without allowing a run. He's 3-0 in that span, having yielded five hits while recording 16 strikeouts against four walks.

"It's awesome for me," he said. "The first month and a half of the year was kind of a struggle, giving up a few too many hits, a few too many runs, walks as well. But I'm settling down and hopefully hitting my stride."

On June 16, Davies (4-4) allowed two hits over six innings against Trenton, walking two and fanning three. Last Sunday, he gave up just one hit -- a leadoff double -- across seven innings vs. Binghamton, with two walks and four strikeouts.

Friday marked Davies' second outing of the year in which he did not walk a batter. He threw 63 of 91 pitches for strikes while inducing five groundouts and three flyouts.

The 2011 26th-round pick retired his first 11 batters before yielding a two-out single to Jarrett Parker in the fourth inning. Parker stole second, but Davies stranded him there by punching out Mario Lisson.

Richmond got its other hit off Davies in the fifth, which Ricky Oropesa led off with a double to right. The Flying Squirrels put runners on the corners with one out when Tyler LaTorre reached on an error by shortstop Garabez Rosa. Davies got Myles Schroder to pop out to Rosa and struck out Skyler Stromsmoe.

The 21-year-old sailed through a 1-2-3 sixth, his fourth such inning of the night.

With the effort, Davies lowered his ERA to 3.69, down from 6.26 on June 11.

"To start off the year," the Arizona native said, "I kind of struggled with not so much command but just trying to be over the plate, just trying to be too fine with some pitches and walking a few guys. But as of late, I've been trying to cut down on the walks, trying to throw to contact a little more. And my defense has put the confidence in me that I can do that and have no worries."

Mychal Givens issued three walks in the seventh, including a bases-loaded pass to Schroder with one out. Oliver Drake struck out Stromsmoe and retired Tyler Graham on a grounder to Rosa for his Eastern League-leading 18th save.

Adalberto Mejia (4-6) -- the Giants' third-ranked prospect -- took the loss after giving up three runs on five hits and a walk in 1 2/3 innings. He struck out four.

Bowie completed the sweep by taking the nightcap, 6-3.

Mark Emery is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @Mark_Emery. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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