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Bats' Bullpen Falters Late in 7-5 Loss

April 13, 2024 - International League (IL)
Louisville Bats News Release

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky - The Louisville Bats couldn't break the game open when they had the opportunity in the middle innings before the Columbus Clippers stormed back late, handing the Bats a 7-5 loss on Saturday night in front of 5,769 at Louisville Slugger Field.

Louisville starter Tyler Gilbert began the game in fine form, retiring the first six men he faced to start the night. The Bats broke through in the bottom of the second against Clippers starter Adam Oller. Conner Capel began the inning with a towering fly ball that hit high off the fence in right-center for a double before promptly stealing third. Rece Hinds followed with a ground ball through the drawn in infield for an RBI single to open the scoring.

After Gilbert struck out a couple more in the third, the Bats doubled their lead. Levi Jordan got the frame started with a triple to deep right-center. Two hitters later, Mike Ford lifted a sacrifice fly to left for a 2-0 lead.

Columbus quickly got one back in the top of the fourth as Lorenzo Cedrola began the inning with a triple to center. On the play, the relay throw from Bats shortstop Erik Gonzalez was wild and went into the dugout for an error, allowing Cedrola to come home and cut the lead in half. Gilbert ended a solid start on the mound after four innings, allowing the one run on two hits with five strikeouts.

Yosver Zulueta was first out of the Louisville bullpen and worked around runners in each of his two innings on the mound but stranded the runners on base each time to preserve the 2-1 lead. The Bats couldn't capitalize on a major chance to add on in the bottom of the sixth, loading the bases with nobody out before Clippers reliever Nic Enright retired the next three hitters in order to give his team a chance.

Rehabbing Reds righty Ian Gibaut (L, 0-1) was next into the game for the Bats in the top of the seventh and was unable to hold the lead. Jhonkensy Noel was hit by a pitch to begin the inning. Three hitters later, Daniel Schneemann connected on a two-run homer that just cleared the wall in left to put the clippers ahead for the first time 3-2.

The Clippers broke the game open in the top of the eighth, scoring four runs off Alan Busenitz, capped with a two-run homer from Noel to increase the lead to 7-2.

The Bats threatened in the bottom of the ninth. With the bases loaded and two outs, Michael Trautwein laced a double into the gap in right-center to make it 7-4. A wild pitch allowed Erik Gonzalez to score and cut the deficit to two. As the tying run, Ford got into a deep fly ball to right-center. However, Clippers center fielder Myles Straw made a running catch on the warning track to end the game.

Offensively, the Bats went just 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position in the loss. No Louisville hitter recorded more than one hit, with all nine starters reaching base.

The Bats (6-8) wrap up their series against the Clippers (6-7) on Sunday afternoon. First pitch at Louisville Slugger Field is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. Nick Curran and Jim Kelch will be on the call for 1450/96.1 WXVW.

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