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Orioles minors 5/5: The ends justify the John Means

Only two Orioles affiliates played games on Thursday, which just means that the ones who played had to be impressive - and one of them was.

Norfolk Tides - OFF

Bowie Baysox - Rained out

Frederick Keys 5, Potomac (Walgreens) 2

The Keys and P-Nats carried a 2-2 tie into the ninth inning, at which time the pharmaceutical affiliate forgot how to play defense. Frederick grabbed three runs in the inning while only getting a hit and a walk. A passed ball on a dropped third strike as well as two throwing errors in the inning helped contribute to three unearned Keys runs as they took the win.

Third baseman Jomar Reyes and catcher Jonah Heim - the two biggest position player prospects on the Keys - each had a pair of hits in the game, always a nice sign, but the real star of the game was starting pitcher John Means, who struck out ten batters in six innings.

Means, 23, was an 11th round pick in 2014 and recently popped his way onto the bottom of's top 30 O's prospects - at #30. The 6'3" lefty has a 2.32 ERA through six starts this year and has struck out 32 Carolina League batters in 31 innings pitched. If he can keep up that success, he might bump himself up a little higher than #30.

Lexington (Royals) 7, Delmarva Shorebirds 5

The Shorebirds carried a 4-3 lead into the eighth inning and then managed to give up four runs in the inning. Oh well. Can't win them all.

It's kind of impressive they managed to get five runs on only six hits, actually. They were helped by a pair of errors that led to two unearned runs in both the fourth and fifth innings. Among players with either prospect heat or hopes, D.J. Stewart was 0-3 with a walk, Ryan Mountcastle was 1-3 with a walk, and Baltimore's own Alex Murphy was 1-4 with a triple in four at-bats.

Murphy's slumped over his last ten games, batting only .139 in that time.

Today's Scheduled Games

Norfolk: at Durham, 7:05. Starter: Nick Additon

Bowie: vs. Erie, 7:05. (Fireworks!) Starter: Chris "I'm Not Saruman" Lee

Frederick: at Potomac, 7:05. Starter: Matthew Grimes

Delmarva: at Lexington, 7:05. Starter: Ofelky Peralta

For complete box scores from these games, check out here.