--By Mike Gilpatrick, River City Cards
--Photos by Jared Anderson
Brandon Finnegan was not sharp against the Norfolk Tides, as the Bats lost to the Baltimore affiliate, 16-1. The loss was the seventh in eight games against Norfolk.
Finnegan surrendered his first three runs in the top of the first inning. First, DH Renato Nunez looped a line-drive single to left-center, scoring Cedric Mullins from second. Then, first baseman Garabez Rosa drove in DJ Stewart from third on an RBI groundout. Mike Yastrzemski drove in the third on a double to center. Catcher Chadwick Tromp cut down Andrew Susac at the plate to end the inning.
Also in the inning, Reds top prospect Nick Senzel was pinch-hit for in the leadoff spot. He left the game with a right index-finger injury.
Norfolk put up another three runs in the third inning. Stewart hit an RBI single to left; plating across Cedric Mullins. Then, Renato Nunez singled in Stewart. Rosa scored the final Tides run of the inning on an RBI single by Yastrzemski. The inning was played in a torrential downpour.
Umpires decided to delay the game after both teams went back to the dugout. As soon as the grounds-crew unfurled the tarp, the skies cleared. The game promptly went into an 40-minute delay, as the crew spread diamond dry on the field.
Susac hit a grand slam in the top of the fourth to end Finnegan's day.
Finnegan pitched 80 total pitches, and gave up 10 runs, all earned, on nine hits and four walks. He also hit two batters. Finnegan did not record a strikeout in his 3.1 innings pitched. His ERA raised from 5.50 to 7.24.
DJ Peterson ended the shutout in the bottom of the inning. He looped a single to center, sending Dilson Herrera home.
Mullins returned Louisville's deficit to 10 in the top of the fifth. He hit his seventh double of the year to left fielder Hernan Iribarren. Drew Dosch scored on the play. Garabez Rosa extended the deficit two outs later, with an RBI single to right.
Peterson's run was the only surrendered by John Means. The LHP went six innings, and gave up the run on five hits, while striking out three. Means recorded the win, and lowered his ERA to 3.79.
Louisville brought out Left-fielder Hernan Iribarren to pitch in the ninth. Mullins drove in Norfolk's first run of the inning, and Stewart blasted his seventh home run of the year to right-center. It was a three-run blast that went 452 feet.
The 16 runs and 20 hits were both season highs for the Bats pitching staff.
The bats move to 26-43. Louisville is now four games under .500 at home. Louisville looks to take game two tomorrow at 7pm. RHP Homer Bailey (0-1, 15.00) takes on RHP Tim Melville (5-5, 5.29).
Mike Gilpatrick is the editor-in-chief, and senior Bats correspondent of River City Cards... More about Mike