VanMeter Ties Franchise Record in 7-5 Loss
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The Louisville Bats (11-18) dropped Friday night's game to the Indianapolis Indians (15-12) by a 7-5 score at Victory Field. Louisville third baseman Josh VanMeter hit two home runs, his fourth multi-homer game of the season, which ties a Louisville franchise record.
Tonight's contest did not exactly start as planned for Louisville, with starting pitcher Vladimir Gutierrez (1-3, 9.00) surrendering a grand slam to Kevin Kramer in the bottom of the first, and Louisville manager Jody Davis being ejected from the ballgame shortly thereafter. Davis was ejected for seemingly arguing about the strike zone with home plate umpire Charlie Ramos, marking Davis' first ejection as Bats manager. Gutierrez would go 4.0 innings, giving up six earned runs on six hits, walking a pair with zero strikeouts on 71 pitches, 44 for strikes.
VanMeter almost singlehandedly brought the Bats back into the contest, getting Louisville on the board with a solo home run in the third, extending his league-leading home run total to a dozen on the year. The Bats grinded out a pair of runs in the fifth on a bases loaded groundout double play and a wild pitch, cutting the deficit to 6-3, with VanMeter on the prowl once again.
In the seventh inning, VanMeter hit his second blast of the night, a two-run shot that made it a one-run ballgame. For VanMeter, his two homers as part of a 3-for-4 night made it his fourth multi-homer game of the season already, tying a Louisville franchise record set by Brandon Cromer (1999) and Mike Hessman (2013) for most multi-homer games in a season with four. VanMeter is now batting .346 on the season, easily leading the International League with an eye-popping 13 home runs and 31 RBI through the team's first 29 games.
Indianapolis grabbed an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh to take a 7-5 lead, which would be the final score. Indians starting pitcher Alex McRae (2-2, 6.60) got the win in his quality start, while Montana DuRapau earned his third save of the season for the Indians. With the loss, the Bats lost out on the chance to win their fourth consecutive series away from Louisville Slugger Field.
The Bats and Indians will face off in the second-to-last game of the series and the road trip for Louisville on Saturday night with a 7:05 scheduled first pitch. Right-hander Jose Lopez (2-2, 5.63) will take the ball for Louisville, set to oppose fellow right-hander Dario Agrazal (1-0, 2.70) for Indianapolis.
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