Game Notes: Toledo Mud Hens (16-27) at Louisville Bats (18-28)
Game 47, Home 24
Toledo Mud Hens (16-27) at Louisville Bats (18-28)
RHP Rob Wooten (0-0, 4.50) vs. RHP Spenser Watkins (3-0, 5.92)
7:00 PM | Friday, May 24, 2019 | Louisville Slugger Field
LISTEN: Nick Curran & Jim Kelch, 790 KRD; iHeartRadio.com; iHeart app
SERIES OPENER: Louisville and Toledo square off on Friday night in the first of a four-game Memorial Day weekend series at Louisville Slugger Field. Right-hander Rob Wooten will take the ball for Louisville for the second time this season, with the Bats looking to get back to .500 against Toledo this year, starting off 3-4.
AGAINST TOLEDO: The Bats welcome the Mud Hens to Louisville Slugger Field for the first time in 2019, already meeting 7 times at Fifth Third Field, including the first 4 games of the season from April 4-7. It's the latest into a season that the clubs will meet at one of their respective homes since Louisville's been affiliated with the Cincinnati Reds (2000), with 2007 being the closest, when the clubs met at Toledo for the first time from May 15-18.
O'GRADY (STILL) RULES!: First baseman Brian O'Grady hit another home run on Thursday, the third in his last 2 games and the sixth in his last 4 contests. The slugging first baseman is now within one homer of the team lead, with Josh VanMeter's 13 pacing Louisville in 2019. O'Grady is batting .325 (41-for-126) with a .413 on-base percentage and an OPS of 1.104 this season.
GOLDEN HOME RUN COMES A MONTH EARLY: O'Grady's 2-run homer in the bottom of the third was Louisville's 50th as a team this season, coming on May 23 in the team's 46th game of the season. In 2018, Louisville did not hit its 50th homer of the season until June 23 in the team's 70th game of the year. That blast was a two-run shot off the bat of Steve Selsky in the bottom of the first inning in a 13-12 victory over the Norfolk Tides.
TRANSACTIONS: The Reds recalled RHP Matt Bowman, who in 16 relief apps with the Bats this season has compiled a 0-1 record with a 3.18 ERA (8er/22.2ip) and one save, walking 12 and striking out 22. In a corresponding move, the Reds optioned to Louisville OF Phillip Ervin, who is batting .228 (21-for-92) in 25 games for the Bats this season. LOU also added RHP Johendi Jiminian, who is 1-1 with a 4.11 ERA (14er/30.2ip) in 9 games (4 starts) with Class AA Chattanooga, walking 12 and striking out 18.
DUE FOR SOME BETTER LUCK: Louisville's in the midst of a 3-game losing streak, dropping all 3 to Indianapolis by one run. Each of the Bats' last 5 losses have come by one run, owning a 6-11 record in games decided by a run on the year. It's the first time Louisville has played in 3 consecutive one-run games since August 4-8 last season, when they played in 4 straight, losing by 5-4, 9-8 and 3-2 scores, and winning 6-5.
THE BENCH IS ON FIRE: Narciso Crook came off the bench and delivered yet again, singling for pitcher Sal Romano in the sixth, and notching another hit to go 2-for-2. As a pinch-hitter this season, Crook is batting .667 (4-for-6). Louisville has been great in the pinch all season long, with pinch hitters batting .320 (8-for-25).
YEAH BABY: Right-hander Alex Powers made his Triple-A debut with Louisville last night, pitching a scoreless seventh inning with 2 strikeouts. The 27-year-old reliever has had a fantastic beginning to his 2019, going 2-0 with a 1.23 ERA (3er/22.0ip) and 6 saves, walking 6 and striking out 33.
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