Bats walk off, defeat Toledo, win first game of 2018
By Mike Gilpatrick
April 7th, 2018
April 7th, 2018
Opening night was frigid. The second game was even chillier. The start time moved up to 5:30 pm, due to forecasted temperatures in the mid-20s.
But that didn't stop the Louisville Bats from winning their first game of 2018. The Cincinnati Reds affiliate defeated the Toledo Mud Hens 4-3, tying the opening series at one game each.
Jackson Stephens started the game for Louisville, and buckled down as the game went on. He went five innings, and gave up two runs, both earned, on five hits and two walks. His ERA was 3.60 after the game.
His opponent also performed well. Chad Bell appeared for parent club Detroit last season in relief, and got the start for Toledo. He went 3.1 innings deep, and gave up just two hits, and one earned run. Bell struck out five.
The Mud Hens notched the first run of the game in the top of the first inning. Jim Adduci looped a ball between first and second for an RBI single. Then, Chad Huffman launched a ball to the corner for an RBI double that scored Adduci from first. After one, the Mud Hens had a 2-0 lead.
In the bottom of the inning, Patrick Kivlehan singled to right-field, scoring Nick Senzel from third. It was Kivlehan's first RBI of the season, and cut Louisville's deficit to one.
Rosell Herrera launhed a bomb in the bottom of the sixth to give Louisville the lead. It scored Alex Blandino; and was hit above the awning in the picnic table area in right. It went for 372 feet, and gave the Bats the 3-2 lead.
The ninth inning was a little hairy. Toledo put runners on the corner with one out, and a fielder's choice plated a run across to tie the game, blowing Zack Weiss's save opportunity. With two outs, Center Fielder Mason Williams made a spectacular over-his-head catch to end the inning with a runner in scoring position.
Then, left-fielder Tyler Goeddel hit a ball past the out-stretched hand of second-baseman Dawel Lugo, and drove in the winning run from second, solidifying Louisville's win.
The Bats four runs were on seven hits and one walk. Louisville struck out 11 times, and left six runners on-base. Meanwhile, Toledo's three runs were also on 11 hits, and four base on balls. The Mud Hens struck out just four times, but left 23 runners on base.
Louisville will look for their first series win tomorrow. Right-hander Jose Lopez picks up the ball for the Bats, facing righty Artie Lewicki. The rubber match will be at 2pm.
images from the game
Photos by Jared Anderson