First baseman Tyler Townsend of the Single-A Frederick Keys has missed the last three games, but is not injured. He is away from the team on a personal matter and should return soon.
He could be back tonight but if he doesn't get back to the team in time for that game at Salem, the club just may wait until they return home on Monday for him to rejoin the club.
Townsend, a 2009 third-round pick out of Florida International, got off to a blazing start and was hitting .344 but then his averaged dropped to .284. But, over his last five Keys' games, he went 10-for-21 with a homer and four RBIs. In 42 games overall, the lefty hitter is batting .309 with 14 doubles, eight homers, 29 RBIs, a .564 slugging percentage and .895 OPS.
The Keys swept a doubleheader at Salem last night and in Game 1 they hit three homers off Junichi Tazawa, a major league pitcher that was there on a rehab assignment. Dale Mollenhauer, Steve Bumbry and Kipp Schutz all connected as Frederick scored eight runs in just 3 1/3 versus Tazawa.
Schutz, by the way, went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts Wednesday in his first game with Frederick after his promotion from Single-A Delmarva. But in Friday's doubleheader, Schutz was 3-for-9 with a homer and four RBIs.
Right-handed pitcher Clayton Schrader picked up a win in his Keys debut in Game 2 last night. He pitched two scoreless innings with two strikeouts.
Schrader fanned an amazing 38 batters over 22 innings with Delmarva before moving up. The 21-year-old was drafted in round ten last June out of San Jacinto Junior College. Over his last four Delmarva games, he fanned 18 over 9 1/3 innings and overall was 1-1 with a 2.05 ERA in 12 Shorebirds' games.
At Double-A Bowie, Xavier Avery is not the only player stealing a lot of bases. He now has 19, which ranks second in the Eastern League. But teammate Greg Miclat is fourth in the league with 16 steals. Miclat has not been thrown out even once this year and is a perfect 16-for-16.
Delmarva beat West Virginia last night 5-4 in a game that took 19 innings and 5:05 to play. That ties for longest game in Shorebirds' history by innings. It is just the second 19-inning game in the club's 16-year history. Delmarva lost 4-3 on July 24, 2000 to the Piedmont Boll Weevils.
In a game that ended at 12:10 this morning in Salisbury, Mikey Planeta doubled to lead off the last of the 19th and later scored the run that ended the marathon.
Delmarva left 15 runners on base in the game and was just 2-for-24 with runners in scoring position while West Virginia went 0-for-14 with RISP. Talk about missed chances.