Bats Cruise to 7-1 Series Opening Victory

May 16, 2023 - International League (IL) - Louisville Bats News Release

Louisville, KY -- TJ Hopkins and Michael Siani hit a home run each and Brett Kennedy turned in a solid start to lift the Louisville Bats (18-21) 7-1 over the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (19-19) on Tuesday night at Louisville Slugger Field.

The Bats took control early, scoring in the home half of the first inning of the game. After two quick outs, Christian Encarnacion-Strand singled into right field to keep the frame alive. Jason Vosler followed behind with a double to get two runners into scoring position for TJ Hopkins who stepped to the plate and launched a three-run shot to left center field to put the Bats up 3-0.

Elly De La Cruz extended the Bats lead to 4-0 in the bottom of the third after his single scored Will Benson, who reached base on a walk and advanced into scoring position on a balk.

Jacksonville cracked the scoreboard for the first time in the top of the fourth, bringing in a run on three hits to make the score 4-1.

The fourth inning run would be the only blemish for Louisville starter Brett Kennedy (1-0, 1.80) in his Bats debut. He would earn the win while covering five innings and surrendering one run, striking out three Jumbo Shrimp batters.

After Michael Siani stretched the lead to 5-1 on a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth, the Bats were poised to strike again in the fifth after a leadoff double from Alejo Lopez. Consecutive RBI base hits from De La Cruz and Encarnacion-Strand gave Louisville a 7-1 lead that would hold until the game's conclusion.

Eduardo Salazar and Ricky Karcher combined to throw the final four innings, shutting out Jacksonville while only surrendering three hits and a walk with three strikeouts to secure the win.

Louisville and Jacksonville will play game two of the six-game series tomorrow, Wednesday May 17th. First pitch is set for 11:05 am E.T. with right hander Frainger Aranguren set to make his Triple-A debut for the Bats while lefty Devin Smeltzer will take the ball for the Jumbo Shrimp.

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