FREDERICK—Orioles top prospect Dylan Bundy knew that eventually, the scoreless-innings streak that defined his dominance in the Low-A South Atlantic League would come to an end.
Now that it has, in his debut with the High-A Frederick Keys, Bundy can focus on incremental improvements like his pitch mix and command, which will be key to his development as he climbs the ladder toward Camden Yards.
"Giving up your first one or two runs in pro ball, it's going to happen to everybody," Bundy said. "Now, I can focus on pitching my game."
For the most part, he did just that in the Keys' 5-3 win over the visiting Salem Red Sox before a sellout crowd of an announced 9,833 on Saturday night at Harry Grove Stadium.
Bundy struck out six in five innings but allowed six hits -- one more than he allowed in eight starts for the Low-A Delmarva Shorebirds combined -- and was charged with the first two earned runs of his professional career on a two-run home run by Salem first baseman Travis Shaw in the fourth inning.
Otherwise, Bundy used his secondary pitches more than he has in any other start this season to keep Salem at bay.
"Last outing, I only threw three off-speed pitches, and the organization wanted me to throw my curveball and changeup a little bit more," Bundy said. "I felt like I did a pretty good job of that, throwing it 1-2 or 0-2 and getting a couple swing and misses, a couple strikeouts on it."
Bundy's wipeout curveball, which sat in the mid-70s with sharp break, went for a strike 10 of the 16 times he threw it, but he threw just a handful of changeups. His fastball sat in the mid-90s for most of the start and touched 97 mph several times.
Three of his six strikeouts came via the fastball -- two looking -- and the other three were on curves. After the game, Bundy said he felt like all three pitches were working Saturday.
An American League scout in attendance said Bundy's changeup wasn't as sharp as when he had observed him with Delmarva but said Bundy has a plus curveball and an impressive fastball.
"It's all in there," the scout said. "He's got all the ability. It's just getting game innings."
In nine professional starts this season between Delmarva and Frederick, Bundy has a 0.51 ERA with 46 strikeouts in 35 innings. He has walked just two and allowed 11 hits.
Frederick manager Orlando Gomez said he thought Bundy was "outstanding" Saturday and called his breaking ball a "major league curveball."
"The one thing I was very impressed with, he never lost his composure," Gomez said. "His composure was great, and he was facing a good hitting team. That team, they can swing the bat, they like to cheat on fastballs, and for me, he pitched very well."