LOUISVILLE, Ky - Coming into the night, the Bats (8-7) were 0-6 this year when the opposition scores first; that figure now stands at 0-7. On a rough day for Bats' pitching, the Indians (11-5) come out victorious, 4-1.
On this chilly Thunder-eve, Daniel Corcino (L, 0-3) labored through the first inning giving up a double and four walks, including walking in two runs. Josh Harrison's double was the only hit of the inning. Corcino threw 42 pitches in the inning and 22 of those were balls.
The second inning went more smoothly for Corcino, giving up just an infield base hit to speedy Darren Ford on a chopper up the middle with one out.
After a quick third, Corcino's control problems continued in the fourth. After issuing two walks to begin the inning to the number eight and nine hitters, a well-placed sacrifice bunt attempt resulted in a single for Darren Ford to load the bases with no outs. Mark Prior entered in a pressure situation out of the pen trying to limit the damage. After back-to-back pitches out of the zone, Prior found his groove, working a magical bottom of the fourth. He coaxed harmless infield pop-ups by the next three hitters, stranding the bases loaded.
Prior wasn't quite as sharp in the fifth, walking two to start the inning. After recording the first out of the inning, the veteran intentionally walked the bases loaded to bring up the Indians' pitcher, Andy Oliver (W, 1-0). Prior induced the ground ball he needed, but Oliver legged out the grounder, pushing the Indians' lead to 3-0. This earned Oliver an RBI to go along with his solid night of work on the mound. The Indians' starter went six full innings giving up just one hit, walking three and striking out ten.
In the seventh, the Bats played some sloppy defense which would cost them another run. A would-be double play to shortstop Emmanuel Burriss was shoveled into the outfield, allowing the runner to advance to third and the batter to reach first safely. The very next batter hit a sharp grounder to third baseman Mike Hessman who fielded the ball cleanly, but proceeded to throw the ball wide of second base into right field. Bats' pitcher Jose Diaz was able to get out of the inning giving up just one unearned run by inducing his third ground ball of the inning, which did result in a double play.
Six Bats' pitchers combined for twelve walks, but the Indians only managed four runs, stranding fifteen runners on base.
Billy Hamilton scored the lone run for the Bats in this one, after drawing a walk in the eighth and stealing his league-leading 10th base. Still, Hamilton has struggled after his hot start, with just four hits in his last 38 at-bats, three of which are bunt singles.
While the Bats have been prolific base-stealers, so have their opponents; the Bats are just 2-for-18 (11.1%) on the year catching would-be base stealers.
Tomorrow's first pitch is scheduled for 2:05, with the Bats' Chad Reineke (2-0, 1.00) taking on Brandon Cumpton (0-0, 6.75) for the Indians. Fans can view Thunder Over Louisville from the comforts of Louisville Slugger Field. Reserved seats are available for the baseball game, fireworks show, and a postgame concert. Parking lots open at 11:30 a.m.