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Mudcats leave Keys all shook up

Posted August 6

The Carolina Mudcats left no doubt on the outcome of Wednesday night’s game against the Frederick Keys as they ended a five-game skid with an 11-3 triumph at Harry Grove Stadium. The Mudcats (22-23, 51-61) jumped out to a 10-1 lead and claimed their fifth win in Maryland. The Keys (20-24, 52-59) fell to 20-31 at home this season.

Ryan Merritt (11-3) pitched six innings, yielding two runs on six hits, to become the winningest Mudcats pitcher for a single season since the move to the Carolina League. Merritt passed Mike Rayl who won 10 starts in 2012. The left-hander walked one and struck out five Keys while notching his 13th quality start.

The loss went to Parker Bridwell (5-8). The right-hander surrendered seven runs, five earned, on eight hits in just four innings. He finished with two walks and three strikeouts.

LeVon Washington opened the scoring in the fourth inning with his fourth home run of the year, a fly ball over the right-center wall off Bridwell. Wynston Sawyer tied the game in the third on a solo shot to left before Carolina unleashed a barrage of offense in the third.

Luigi Rodriguez singled to open the fourth and moved to third on a double by Todd Hankins. Washington worked a walk to loaded the bases and Logan Vick drew a base on balls with one out that forced in Rodriguez for a 2-1 lead. Yhoxian Medina poked a grounder to center, plating two, for a 4-1 lead.

The Mudcats blew open the game with a six-run fifth inning. A pair of singles by Jeremy Lucas and Hankins sandwiched an error to load the bases with no one out. Washington and James Roberts earned consecutive walks to pad the advantage. The Keys aided the rally with a fielding error by reliever Miguel Chalas that scored Hankins. Leading 7-1, Medina bounced into a fielder’s choice to plate Washington and a single by Yandy Diaz scored Roberts. Jerrud Sabourin capped the scoring with a groundout to second.

Jason Esposito and Adrian Marin brought around a run in the sixth and seventh innings respectively, but the Mudcats held a 10-3 serve into the eighth. Washington polished the night with his third RBI of the evening, a single to right that scored Rodriguez from third.

The Mudcats hope for their second series win against the Frederick Keys at Harry Grove Stadium on Thursday, August 7. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. Carolina hosts Myrtle Beach for a weekend series August 8-10.

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