Frederick Keys History

The Frederick Keys History
by Malcolm MacMillan
  • Team has won four Carolina League titles
The Keys won Carolina League titles in 2005, 2007 and 2011, and the banners are on display in the right field corner.

Professional, affiliated baseball came to Frederick, MD, in time for the 1989 season and has been a popular outing for the town’s residents ever since.

The Keys, named after Frederick native Francis Scott Key, who composed The Star-Spangled Banner in 1814, spent the 1989 season at McCurdy Field, which opened in 1924 and lacked many modern-day amenities. On Opening Day of the 1989 Carolina League season, the Keys lost both games of a doubleheader to Durham. In the first of those games, Durham starter Dennis Burlingame hurled a perfect game. And in the second game, future Atlanta Braves star Steve Avery two-hit the Keys.

Despite the inauspicious start, the Keys soon sound their winning ways, and led by a 10-home run season from 22-year-old David Segui, the team finished 73-65. A year later, after moving into Nymeo Field at Harry Grove Stadium, the Keys won 74 ballgames and won their first of four Carolina League championships.

The next decade proved to have more downs than ups for the franchise, but the club saw success in the middle part of the 2000s, winning league titles in 2005 and 2007. In 2011, the team won a franchise-record 80 games and won their fourth championship.

Notable alumni

Jake Arrieta
Erik Bedard
Dylan Bundy
Jerry Hairston, Jr.
Nick Markakis
Brian Matusz
David Segui
Nolan Reimold
Brian Roberts
Pete Rose, Jr.
Jayson Werth
Matt Wieters