Low-scoring Keys salvage split of doubleheader Short's RBI hit in 7th defeats Avalanche, 3-2

April 14, 1997|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

FREDERICK -- The Frederick Keys have scored five runs in their past four games, yet have won three of them.

They had to scratch for offense again yesterday, but managed to salvage a doubleheader split when pinch hitter Rick Short knocked home the winning run in the seventh inning to beat the Salem Avalanche, 3-2, at Grove Stadium.

Salem (3-7) rolled to an 8-0 victory in the opener before 2,819 wind-chilled fans.

The second-game rally started when Carlos Akins singled against Sean Murphy and Lincoln Martin sacrificed for the second out.

Frederick manager Dave Hilton sent up Short, and his Avalanche counterpart, Moose McGuire, brought Heath Bost into the game to relieve although he was not warming in the bullpen.

Short, a .312 hitter in the Carolina League last season, lined a 1-1 fastball to left and Akins sped home in the Single-A game.

"I didn't know what they were talking about [in a conference on the mound before Bost arrived]," said Short. "So, I went up there with an open mind. That manager plays his outfield toward right on me, so I went to left."

Hilton said he batted Short for Ryan Hendricks because "Rick is maybe our best hitter. Sometimes you have to go for it."

Winner Jason Rogers (1-0) had extricated the Keys (6-3) from a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the seventh by getting pinch hitter John Clifford to hit into a pitcher-to-home-to-first double play.

"One good thing," said Hilton. "We are winning the close ones. That's the sign of a good team. This was one of those days when we didn't play great, but everything worked out all right."

In the opener, Salem's Tom Stepka (1-1) went the distance with a six-hitter and third baseman Jamie Taylor knocked in four runs, two with the team's first homer of the season.

Baysox 8, Phillies 3: Wady Almonte's bases-empty homer in the fifth inning gave visiting Bowie (7-1) a lead it would not relinquish in the Double-A Eastern League.

Bombers 1-15, Shorebirds 0-1: Visiting Capital City scored seven in the first inning and six in the third en route to victory in the second game and a doubleheader sweep of Delmarva (5-6) in the Single-A South Atlantic League.

Pub Date: 4/14/97

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