Potomac’s losing streak was extended to three as they were shut out for the second time this season, 4-0 by the first-place Frederick Keys.
Perhaps the outcome was evident from the first inning, which began with such promise. Isaac Ballou led off with a line-drive single to right, followed by a ‘tweener that fell in to short right-center off the bat of Christopher Bostick. Stephen Perez then drew the first of two walks on the night to load the bases.
Then Spencer Kieboom was caught looking. Drew Ward swung and missed for another K. John Wooten worked the count full, which allowed the runners to take off and ensure that at least two runs would score on anything that got out of the infield.
Nope — Wooten whiffed. It was the first and best chance for Potomac to score.
The next-best chance came in the 5th when Ballou walked and took third on another Bostick single to short right-center, though an on-line throw would have got him. Bostick advanced on the throw, which missed third but was backed up by the pitcher.
Perez flew out to shallow center and Ballou ran the P-Nats out of the inning by getting thrown out at the plate.
John Simms, who had been hit hard in his first two starts, was the hard-luck loser as he turned in a quality start of two runs allowed on four hits and no walks over six innings.
Jake Johansen was the first man out the ‘pen and also had the misfortune of a one-out error followed by a double, which forced the Potomac infield to play in. Sure enough, Frederick’s John Ruettiger bounced one up the middle to double the Keys lead from 2-0 to 4-0.
It was mostly a moot point, though, since P-Nats went down in order in the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th as Keys reliever Dennis Torres was perfect while earning his first save of the season.
The loss dropped Potomac to 11-18 for the season, five and half behind Frederick and just a game and a half out of the Carolina League North cellar.
Today, it’s a matchup of southpaws Matthew Spann (0-4, 5.87) faces off against Jhonathan Ramos (0-0, 1.93).