Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
After Thursday night’s game was rained out, Dylan Bundy finally got his first start for the Frederick Keys since being brought up from Aberdeen late last week.
While pitching for the Ironbirds over the past couple of weeks, Bundy was pitching lights out baseball. In Aberdeen, he struck out 22 batters over three games and only allowed one earned run over a combined fifteen innings of work. Unfortunately for Bundy, his start against Lynchburg on Independence Day was anything but lights out.
Bundy started the game off well by sitting the side down in order in the bottom of the first inning. When Bundy stepped back out onto the mound in the second inning is when he saw some trouble. After forcing a line drive out and then striking out the following batter, Bundy hit the batter, Will Skinner.
Skinner proceeded to steal second base as Bundy faced the next batter. After walking a man to put runners on first and second with two outs, he gave up an RBI single scoring Skinner in the process to give Lynchburg an early 1-0 lead in the second.
Luckily, Bundy was able to limit the damage by striking out the next batter to end the inning. He pitched the third and fourth innings and only allowed two hits with no runs over these two innings.
Bundy’s worst inning of work came in the fifth. He walked the first batter, gave up a double to left field, and then after he forced a pop fly for the first out of the inning, Lynchburg scored on a sacrifice fly. Then the Lynchburg batter, who hit the double earlier in the inning, eventually scored after Bundy was taken out of the game off a wild pitch.
Bundy ended the day going 4.2 innings, allowing four hits, three earned runs and only struck out three batters. Despite getting the no decision, Bundy did suffer a setback on Friday. This is understandable though. As Bundy moves up the Orioles Minor League system on his way back to Baltimore, he will encounter better batters who are more patient at the plate and have more bat speed.
It could not have been expected for Bundy to have outstanding outing after outstanding outing. He was due for the type of game he had on Friday. Although he did not pitch a gem, he kept the Keys in the game instead of caving in when Lynchburg was threatening with runners in scoring position. In order to get out of these jams, he had to have a “reliever mentality” which is exactly what he may be if the Orioles were to bring him up to the Majors come late August to early September.