By Ty Bartell
NILES OH- With rain in the forecast and Mother Nature confused on what month it is, The Mahoning Valley Scrappers and Frederick Keys battled in the second game of a three game home series for The Scrappers on Tuesday night. With a game time start temperature of 59 degrees and the wind blowing, it made for an interesting baseball game in June to say the least.
Ahmad Harajli toed the rubber for Mahoning Valley while Drew Buhr got the start for Frederick. A couple of two-out walks got Harajli in trouble to start the first before a ground out kept The Keys off the board early. Mahoning Valley would come back in the bottom of the first inning to score the first run of the game off a Colton Coates RBI-single that brought Ny’Zaiah Thompson home, giving Mahoning Valley an early 1-0 advantage.
Both teams exchanged zeros on the scoreboard, that was until the top of the fourth inning. Following a leadoff single by Irvin Escobar, Harajli would force a flyout before another single was hit by AJ Shaver and the following two batters were walked to tie the game up 1-1 before a wild pitch from Harajli that scored the go-ahead run in Shaver. Harajli would force Luca Danos into a double-play to limit damage and keep The Scrappers within striking distance, trailing 2-1 to The Keys.
In the top of the fifth inning, Harajli got the first out before loading the bases on a single and two walks, which prompted the pitching change to Alex Shea in the inning. Shea would get a pop fly on the infield prior to a wild pitch that added a run to The Frederick lead with Kendry Maduro coming home on the pitch. Shea would get out of the inning when he caught Ty Hamilton looking to end the inning with two in scoring position. The very next inning, Tervell Johnson got a one out single before stealing both second and third allowing Luca Danos to bring him home on an RBI-single, extending The Keys lead 4-1.
However, it was the eighth inning that made all the difference. After Shea went two and two-thirds innings of work, keeping Mahoning Valley close, The Scrappers turned to Isaiah Jackson. A bad day at the office for Jackson and the defense spiraling for The Scrappers did not help matters much as Frederick put up eight runs in the eighth inning! After two walks, two wild pitches, an error by Coates and four hits allowed in the inning, two of which extra-base hits with an AJ Shaver two-run homerun and a Ty Hamilton triple, Mahoning Valley pulled the plug and brought in Andrew Lucas, now trailing 12-1 to Frederick.
No response on the offensive side offered by Mahoning Valley this time around, as The Scrappers sat in stunned silence while The Keys pitching continued to dominate to the tune of 12 strikeouts as a team, while the offense for Frederick walked the line of being both patient and aggressive, walking 13 times as a team while simultaneously recording 13 hits as a ballclub to make up their 12 runs of offense.
Both teams are back in action on Wednesday evening, as The Scrappers (5-6) will look to salvage the final game in the series while The Keys (6-5) will be looking for the sweep. Trouble making it to the ballpark? We will have you covered! Catch all the live-game action on YSN!