INDIANAPOLIS, In. - A pitchers duel between Louisville and Indianapolis went the Bats way as they won 4-2 on Saturday night at Victory Field.
Louisville left-hander Jeff Francis (3-1, 1.99) had a career night on the bump as he worked six and two-thirds innings, allowed seven hits, two runs, and struck out a career tying 10 batters. Francis had his last 10 strikeout game all the way back in September of 2007 as a starter for the Colorado Rockies against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
He had command of his fastball all game long, getting ahead of 20 of the 29 batters he faced on Saturday.
Indy sent their southpaw Adam Wilk (2-1, 4.32) to the mound opposite of Francis. He pitched a stellar game through five innings allowing three runs on four hits and struck out four.
Running into trouble in the top of the sixth inning, Wilk allowed the first three runners to reach base, walking a pair and was relieved by right-hander Vin Mazzaro.
Mazzaro got a ground ball to shortstop Michael Martinez, with the bases loaded but great hustle by Louisville shortstop Kristopher Negron beat out the throw at first allowing Chris Nelson to score, giving the Bats a 2-1 lead.
Mike Wilson would score the Bats third run of the night as Mazzaro threw a ball to the backstop allowing him to trot home from third. That would be all the Bats pitching would need on this night.
There was a first at Victory Field as Pirates' top prospect Gregory Polanco struck out in his first two plate appearances against Francis. It was the first time he had struck out twice in a game all season.
Outfielder Jason Bourgeois extended his hit-streak to a team leading nine games with a single in the first and scored the teams first run. He also stole a base on the night giving him the team lead in that category as well with three.
Inching closer to the all-time games played marked, Corky Miller was the starting catcher and was 2-for-4 with an RBI. Miller is now only 14 games away from breaking Bill Lyons franchise record for games played.
Bats closer Jose Diaz notched his fourth save in as many chances, getting the final five outs of the game, two of them strikeouts. He came in in the 8th inning with two runners in scoring position and was able to escape. He followed it in the 9th retiring the Indians in order.
Moving to 8-7 on the season Louisville has yet to fall below .500 and will look to win two in a row tomorrow at 1:35 p.m. at Victory Field. RHP Josh Smith (2-0, 2.63) will toe the rubber of Victory Field for the Bats.