Even though they lost eight of their last 10 regular season games, the Single-A Frederick Keys are back in the playoffs and will host Potomac tomorrow night in Game 1 of a best-of-five league semifinal series.
Frederick finished with the best record in the Carolina League at 80-59 and that is also Frederick’s best record ever. The Keys are in the playoffs for the fifth time in seven seasons and are looking for a fourth championship after winning Mills Cup titles in 1990, 2005 and 2007.
The Keys will be without two injured players for the playoffs in outfielders Kipp Schutz and Steve Bumbry. Schutz suffered a concussion when he dove over the fence in Wilmington over the weekend and Bumbry has a hamate bone injury.
Glynn Davis was moved from Aberdeen to help the Frederick outfield and Jacob Julius could be returning. Other players that could wind up with the Keys for the postseason include Aaron Baker, Ty Kelly and Joe Oliveira.
Right-handed pitcher Ryan Berry was recently moved to Frederick and two pitchers that finished the year at Triple-A, Sean Gleason and Ryohei Tanaka, are likely to rejoin the Keys.
It appears Bobby Bundy, who made 20 starts for Frederick, will not be with the club for the playoffs.
Lefty Jake Pettit, who is 7-0 with a 1.62 ERA in ten Keys starts, is the game one starter for Frederick on Wednesday night and Rick Zagone, who went 4-2 with an ERA of 2.97 in seven starts, is expected to start game two.
Tanaka (9-5, 3.33 ERA) would possibly start game three, leaving Scott Copeland (3-2, 2.14 ERA) and Nick Haughian (11-12, 4.40 ERA) for games four and five if necessary.
Potomac went 39-31 to tie Frederick for first in the second half race and went 68-71 on the year. These clubs split 20 regular season meetings.
After Frederick hosts games one and two Wednesday and Thursday at Harry Grove Stadium, Potomac will host Game 3 and, if necessary, Game 4. Frederick would host the fifth and final game, if needed, Sunday.
Kinston plays Myrtle Beach in the other Carolina League series and the two winners meet in a best-of-five championship series.