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A Day with the Frederick Keys Part 3; Scouting Notes on Hitters and Two Pitchers

June 4th, 2014 at 10:08 AM
By Josh Michael

If you follow us on Twitter and Facebook, then you noticed that our editor spent the day Monday with the Baltimore Orioles High-A affiliate Frederick Keys and over the course of the past day and a half, we have brought you a multi-part series on his day with the Keys. Today we conclude the series with his scouting notes on most of the Keys hitters as well as the two pitchers who worked in the game.

'Baltimore Orioles Bird' photo (c) 2011, Keith Allison - license:

We will warn you that this article is a bit lengthy, but once you finish reading it, we believe you will know a lot more about the players in the Orioles organization with the Keys.

We will begin with our editor's notes on the position players he watched take both batting practice and their in-game at bats, as well as some of their defensive abilities.

  • Adrian Marin – The young infielder who was named the Carolina League Player of the Week for the week ending June 1, was one of the players our editor wanted to watch. At the plate has some quick hands, can go to both sides of the field, and he has a nice short stroke. Defensively he has good hands with an average arm, but gets quick at times, which throws off his timing timing.
  • Glynn Davis – The Keys leading hitter, the outfielder had the night off, but in watching BP, he throws his hands at the ball well, and he keeps the bat in the zone a long time, which is a tremendous attribute to have.
  • Lucas Herbst – Another outfielder for the Keys, the left handed hitter has quick hands and can pull the ball with authority, but he dips his back should a bit and pulls off the ball. When he faced a left handed pitcher in the game, he looked overmatched due to his tendency to pull off the ball.
  • Tucker Nathans – Yet another Keys left handed hitter, he has good pull power, but his bat looked a little slow and he pulls off the ball. He too looked overmatched against the left handed pitcher and it's largely due to pulling off the ball.
  • Wynston Sawyer - One of the Keys catchers, he had a very quite lower half at the plate, quick hands and he is a nice line drive hitter. It is easy to see that he has gap to gap power and doubles should be a frequent occurrence for him. Behind the plate he received the ball well and had good framing technique, but his footwork was a bit poor and he rushes when a runner is attempting a steal. His arm was about average, but his footwork made him slow to second.
  • Sammie Starr – The 5'8'' infielder is the definition of a contact hitter. He has a nice compact swing and can spread the ball all over the field, but he did struggle with the inside pitch.
  • Jason Esposito – The second round pick of the Orioles in the 2011 draft had the night off from game action, but during BP our editor saw that he can keep his hands inside the baseball extremely well and can go the other way with authority. He sprayed the ball all over the field.
  • Brenden Webb – The left handed outfielder had what our editor deemed the most impressive swing that he saw during the day. Webb keeps his hands inside the baseball extremely well, and absolutely peppers the middle of the field. His hands are quick enough to pull the inside pitch with authority and has good speed. The one knock would be that he seemed to struggle a little bit in picking up the ball from a left handed pitcher. Defensively, he had nice closing speed in centerfield and can cover some ground. His arm was slightly above average.
  • Zane Chavez – Another Keys catcher, but was serving as the DH on the night, Chavez has had a good season thus far and we must have caught him on a bad night or Wilmington knew the scouting report on him. It was easily apparent that the left handed hitter cannot handle the inside pitch and he was easily jammed at the plate. He looks like a hitter that needs the ball to be out over the plate in order to be successful.

'100_0660' photo (c) 2005, Jim Downing - license:

Despite losing the game 3-0, the Keys got a very nice outing from their starting pitcher, Branden Kline and only needed one reliever, Mychal Givens, to get through the game. Here are the scouting notes on both right handers.

  • Kline – Has a normal delivery and release point, and his fastball was consistently hitting 87-89 and topped out at 91 a couple of times. Our editor was very impressed with his changeup as it had nice movement, but needs some work on his breaking pitch as it had decent movement, but struggles with the command of it. Kline showed that he can make mid-game adjustments as he was struggling with command early and leaving pitches up in the zone, but made an adjustment and had good command after that. He showed some bulldog like mentality as well as he shook off an error by his defense and came up with multiple big strikeouts to escape jams. Lastly, he showed good stamina as he did not lose any velocity throughout the game and he tossed 6 2/3 innings on 101 pitches.
  • Givens – The right hander has a low 3/4 release point, which is very deceptive to right handers, but struggled mightily with his command. Our editor saw him pitch earlier in the season as well and he struggled with his command that day as well. The issue for Givens is that while his slider has tremendous movement, it was only effective when he actually started it in the strikezone. If he started the slider outside of the strikezone, whether inside or outside, hitters were able to easily layoff of it. He had good velocity as he sat 91-92 in his 2 1/3 innings.

We hope you have enjoyed our 'A Day with the Keys' series and hope that you feel a little bit more knowledgeable about the Keys roster and we hope you head out to Harry Grove Stadium soon to catch the Keys in action.

If you missed Part 1 and Part 2 of our series, you can check out our interviews with pitchers Matt Hobgood (click here) and Matt Taylor (Click here)


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Tags: Adrian Marin, Baltimore, Baltimore Orioles, Baseball, Brenden Webb, Frederick Keys, Jason Esposito, Matt Hobgood, Matt Taylor, MLB, Mychal Givens

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