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Orioles minor league recap 4/8: Zac Lowther impresses in season debut

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Lowther pitched five shutout innings and Yusniel Diaz hit his first home run in Bowie’s win.

MLB: Spring Training-Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

Gwinnett Stripers (ATL) 4, Norfolk Tides 3

Keegan Akin made his triple-A debut in this game after a very solid season with double-A Bowie in 2018. The #6 prospect for the Orioles threw 67 pitches in three innings with three hits, three walks, and three strikeouts. Not great, but very symmetrical. He was reportedly hitting 96 on the radar gun which is pretty swoon worthy from a lefty.

Luis Ysla followed with three innings of relief, giving up two runs. Luis Gonzalez and Josh Lucas each pitched an inning apiece.

It was a slow day on offense as the Tides picked up only four hits in the game. Two of those were from Stevie Wilkerson, who is hitting a gaudy .455 on the young season. D.J. Stewart had a nice day at the plate with a double and two walks, and Jaycob Brugman hit his first home run of the year. Ryan Mountcastle and Chance Sisco both went 0-for-2 with a walk.

Bowie Baysox 6, Harrisburg Senators (WAS) 2

If you’re a Zac Lowther fan, this was a fun game for you! And for me, as I consider myself a Zac Lowther fan. Currently ranked the #8 prospect for the Orioles, Lowther had a great season debut, going five shutout innings with two hits, two walks, and six strikeouts.

Both Senators runs came off of Brian Gonzalez, who pitched two innings in relief. Tanner Chleborad finished things off with two scoreless innings in which he picked up four strikeouts.

The Baysox had a big third inning in which Rylan Bannon hit a bases-loaded double that gave the team a 3-0 lead. The next batter, #1 prospect Yusniel Diaz, hit his first home run of the season to make it 5-0. Diaz also walked twice. A Preston Palmeiro RBI single in the sixth inning knocked in the sixth run.

Frederick Keys 11, Winston-Salem Dash (CWS) 10

It was a wild one in Frederick! While the Keys were being shutout through the first four innings of the game, starting pitcher Matthias Dietz was having a rough go of it. Dietz gave up six runs in just three innings pitched. He did face four batters in the fourth inning but was pulled without recording an out. He walked four, including three in that disastrous fourth inning. He left with the bases loaded and relief pitcher Luis Perez allowed all three to score.

After that, the bullpen settled down and gave the Keys time to come back. Perez and David Lebron combined to pitch five scoreless innings.

The Keys picked up a single run in the fifth on a Mason McCoy single but then scored a whopping eight runs in the eighth inning, highlighted by a grand slam from Yeltsin Gudino. Gudino also doubled in the fifth inning and had the Keys only two extra base hits.

The Keys turned to Diogenes Almengo in the ninth inning for the three-run save, but he blew it. Four runs later the Dash had taken a 10-9 lead, but the Keys weren’t finished. A single from Kirvin Moesquit and a walk by Gudino set up back-to-back RBI singles from Stuart Levy and McCoy to walk it off.

Delmarva Shorebirds @ Lexington Legends (KCR) - Canceled

This game was canceled due to rain and will not be made up as the teams do not face each other again this season.

More details for these games, including box scores, can be found at MiLB.com.

Today’s Games

  • Norfolk @ Charlotte, 7:04. Starter: Yefry Ramirez
  • Frederick vs. Fayetteville, 7:00. Starter: Cody Sedlock
  • Delmarva @ Kannapolis, 7:00. Starter: Nick Vespi