For the first time this season, the Frederick Keys have had a winning record over a span of more than two games. After splitting a partial doubleheader Tuesday, the Keys have won four of their past seven.

Last weekend the Keys split a four-game series at Lynchburg -- their first split of a series this season. They lost their first 14. And after a strong weekend -- capped by a 14-2 victory over the Hillcats on Sunday -- the Keys finally are beginning to show signs of life, especially at the plate.

At 12-39 entering last night, the Keys are still in last place in the Northern Division of the Class A Carolina League, and they have one of the worst records in professional baseball. But their batting average has improved to .262, third in the eight-team league.

Outfielder B.J. Littleton went 14 for 29 with three runs and three stolen bases last week, improving his average to .314, eighth best in the Carolina League. Littleton is also tied for second in the league in triples (four) and seventh in the league in stolen bases (10). Designated hitter Mike Done has been solid in his three weeks in Frederick, batting .301. Last week he batted .357 with 10 RBI.

The Keys' pitching has not caught up, and the staff is still ranked last in the league with a 5.46 ERA. But left-hander Richard Stahl has remained strong, including a performance on May 26 in which he yielded one earned run in 62/3 innings. He is one of just two Keys pitchers with more than one win.

* DAVIES CUT: Frederick's roster has undergone several changes recently, including the release of local prospect Gregg Davies. The first baseman, a 1998 graduate of Sherwood High, was cut on May 21 after batting .200 in 12 games for the Keys this year. In his career in the Orioles organization, Davies batted .225 with two home runs in 138 games.