Memphis Redbirds Game Notes: July 22, 2021
Thursday, July 22nd 6:00 p.m. CT Memphis Redbirds (32-36) at Louisville Bats (27-40) Game 4 of 7
Louisville Slugger Field / Louisville, KY Game #69 of 130 Away Game #33 of 65
RHP Daniel Ponce de Leon (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. RHP Ashton Goudeau (1-2, 4.68 ERA)
MiLB.tv & First Pitch App: Evan Stockton & Justin Gallanty
Last Time Out: The magical win streak for the Memphis Redbirds would not end on Wednesday night. They took both games in a doubleheader at the Louisville Bats (Triple-A affiliate, Cincinnati Reds), winning the first game 1-0 and rallying back to take the second game 5-4. Matthew Liberatore dominated game one, racking up nine strikeouts in his six scoreless frames, all of which were swinging. The Redbirds entered the top of the seventh inning in game two down 3-1, but the "Rallybirds" roared back, scoring four runs in the frame to take the lead for good. Lane Thomas provided the first big blow in the seventh, as his two-run single into shallow right field scored Clint Coulter and Rayder Ascanio and tied the game. Then, after a walk loaded the bases again, Nolan Gorman had the knockout punch. His sharp single into right field brought home Scott Hurst and Thomas to make the game 5-3 and put Memphis in position for its 11th straight win.
Let's Go Streaking: The Memphis Redbirds have now won 11 consecutive games, dating back to July 9. The 'Birds won the final two games of a series in Louisville before sweeping six games from Norfolk at home and taking the first three games of this week's series in Louisville. The Redbirds have jumped from seventh to fifth in the Triple-A East Southeast Division during the streak. If Memphis wins on Thursday night, they will set a new franchise record for most consecutive victories. They tied the previous record, set in 2017, by winning both games of a doubleheader on Wednesday night.
Memphis Starter: Daniel Ponce de Leon begins a rehab assignment with the Redbirds tonight. The righthander has spent the bulk of his season with St. Louis, posting an ERA of 7.03 in 24.1 IP (19 earned runs) with 17 strikeouts and 13 walks in 17 total appearances with two starts. Ponce de Leon has also made two brief starts with Memphis this season, working 3.0 total hitless and scoreless innings with four walks and three strikeouts. Ponce de Leon has spent parts of each of the last four years with St. Louis. No stranger to Memphis, Ponce de Leon posted an ERA of 2.88 or better with the Redbirds in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Louisville Starter: Ashton Goudeau makes his eighth appearance and fifth start with the Bats this season on Thursday evening. In his first seven appearances, the righthander's ERA is 4.68 in 25.0 IP with 17 strikeouts and nine walks. Goudeau has also made five relief appearances with Cincinnati this season, recording an ERA of 4.00 in 9.0 IP (four earned runs) with nine walks and five strikeouts. The 28-year-old made his MLB debut during the 2020 season, allowing seven earned runs in 8.1 IP and four relief appearances for the Reds.
Gorman Getting Going: Nolan Gorman has been on fire over his last eight games. During that stretch, Gorman is 13-32 (.406) with four home runs, 13 RBI, six runs and four walks. Gorman had the game-winning two-run single in the seventh inning on Wednesday against Louisville. He also had the game-winning hit on Tuesday via an RBI single in the fifth.
Dominant Bullpen: The Redbirds bullpen has been lights out over the last 14 games. Over that span, 'Birds relievers have posted a 2.38 ERA. During this series, the bullpen for Memphis has racked up 10 strikeouts in 9.0 innings.
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