LOUISVILLE, Ky.-The Louisville Bats (2-5) failed to avoid a sweep by the Toledo Mud Hens, dropping the series finale, 4-2 at Louisville Slugger Field on Wednesday evening.
Through the first three innings, right-handed Bats' starter Rob Wooten faced the minimum number of Toledo batters despite allowing a hit in the second inning. Through six innings of shutout baseball, Wooten had allowed only three base runners.
The bats showed some life for Louisville in the middle innings with the team scoreless streak coming to an end n the fourth at 22-consecutive innings. Two straight singles by catcher Rob Brantley and designated hitter Tyler Goeddel set up a ground-rule double by shortstop Zach Vincej that plated the first run of the contest.
"We had 11 hits but could only muster a couple runs out of that," said manager Delino DeShields of his team's day at the plate. "The issue is we aren't getting the timely hits."
Later, in the bottom of the sixth, left-fielder Phil Ervin launched a homerun to left center for his first career Triple-A homer.
"It's pretty special to go out there and get my first Triple-A homerun," Ervin said of the projected 388-foot blast. "It always feels good to get a hit though."
The Bats would end the home half of the sixth up 2-0 over the Mud Hens.
Despite six shutout innings of work for Wooten, the right-hander would allow consecutive singles with one out in the top of the seventh, ending his outing. Right-hander Luis Coleman would allow the next two Toledo batters to reach via a walk and a single to plate to runs for the Mud Hens. Both runs were charged to Wooten.
In the eighth, the Mud Hens managed to plate two more runs without a hit in the inning, giving Toledo a 4-2 lead. The first three batters of the inning reached on a walk, hit-by-pitch, and an error by Coleman. One run was scored on the Coleman error, while the second came off a sacrifice fly to right field by the Mud Hens' Omar Infante.
The Bats threatened in the eighth with runners and first and second and two outs, but failed to plate another before being sat down in order in the ninth. Righty Dustin Molleken gets the win for the Mud Hens moving to 2-0 after tossing one-and-two-thirds scoreless innings in relief, while right-hander Arcenio Leon picks up his second save of the season with a perfect ninth inning. Right-handed reliever Luis Coleman takes the loss moving to 0-1 on the year.
Another highlight from the Bats' day at the plate, first-baseman Sebastian Elizalde increased his hitting streak to seven games with a third inning single. A single in the fifth gave Elizalde his sixth muli-hit game 2017. The first-baseman went 3-5 on the day with two singles and a double in the seventh to increase his batting average to .484 on the year.
"I am feeling really comfortable and just want to see the ball as it comes," Elizalde said describing his hot start to the season. "I do not want to do too much, just put it in play."
After a seven-game home stand to begin the 2017 campaign, the Bats hit the road Thursday to begin a four-game series with Columbus Clippers. Righty Jackson Stephens (0-0, 11.25) will take the mound for Louisville with Clippers starting right-hander Adam Plutko (0-0, 10.13) with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.