SERIES ON THE LINE: The Bats will look to carry their momentum from Wednesday's terrific comeback victory into Thursday's rubber match, with right-hander Tyler Mahle set to make his first Louisville start this season since being optioned. Last night, the Bats overcame a 5-2 deficit in the bottom of the eighth with a four-run inning, tying their biggest comeback of the season en route to knotting the series at one game apiece. With a win tonight in the rubber match, Louisville would win its sixth series in its last 7 tries, with its lone tie coming at Columbus in a 4-game series at Huntington Park.
AGAINST PAWTUCKET: The Bats and PawSox meet for the final time in the 2018 season tonight at Louisville Slugger Field for the rubber match. The clubs met about two months ago at McCoy Stadium, with Pawtucket taking two of three games. Louisville won the series opener in that matchup by a 7-4 score, dropping the next games by 8-1 and 5-1 scores. Last season, Louisville won the season series against the PawSox, taking four of six games.
FOUR SQUARE: The PawSox scored 4 runs in the top of the eighth of last night's ballgame to take a 5-2 lead. Louisville would answer with a four-spot of its own in the home half of the inning, with Kevin Quackenbush closing the deal in the ninth to give the Bats a 6-5 victory. The 3-run comeback ties Louisville's largest comeback of the season, also occurring on July 1 at Toledo, when LOU trailed 3-0 and came back to eventually win by a 9-6 score.
ONE-RUN GAMES: The Bats have played in 4 consecutive games decided by one run. It's the first time that has happened since April 27-29, 2015 all against Indianapolis, with Louisville going 1-3 in those games, just like this time around. If the Bats play a one-run game in their next contest, they will have played 5 consecutive for the first time since July 23-27, 2013, playing in 5 straight one-run games at Syracuse (7/23-7/25) and vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (7/26-7/27), going 1-4 in those games.
20 SAVES: Right-hander Kevin Quackenbush tossed a scoreless ninth last night, recording his 20th save for Louisville this season, which ranks second in the league. He is the first Bats pitcher to reach 20 saves in a season since RHP Jon Adkins in 2008, whose 30 saves led the IL that season.
BORN AN O'G: Outfielder Brian O'Grady has homered in back-to-back games, extending his hitting streak to 7 games. Since joining Louisville on July 21, he's hit safely in 11 of 15 starts.
BATS HEATED UP WITH THE WEATHER: Since falling to a season-high 20 games below the .500 mark (35-55) on July 16, the Bats are 16-6 in their last 22 games. The 22-game run includes a 9-game winning streak from July 17-25, their longest win streak since the 2010 season.
BATS ADD REYES: Right-hander Jesus Reyes was optioned to Class AAA Louisville. He pitched in one game for Cincinnati on August 4, tossing 2.0 scoreless innings of relief in his Major League debut at Nationals Park in Washington. In 4 games with the Bats this season, Reyes is 1-0 with a 1.35 ERA (1er/6.2ip) with 2 walks and 5 strikeouts.
TODAY'S STARTER: TYLER MAHLE
2018 Season: Mahle (last name rhymes with RALLY) has spent the entire 2018 season to this point in the Reds' rotation, starting and winning the fourth game of the season for Cincinnati, their first win as a club this year, on April 2 vs. the Cubs...his 2.18 ERA in June was the lowest ERA in a month for a Reds rookie (min 5 GS) since Tony Cingrani's 2.08 ERA in July 2013.
More From This Season: Currently leads National League rookies in innings pitched (109.0), games started (22), wins (7), losses (9), walks (50), and ranks 2nd in strikeouts (105) behind only the Cardinals' Jack Flaherty (118).
Transactions: Mahle was optioned to Class AAA Louisville on August 3 after making 22 starts for Cincinnati this season...Mahle will be the 15th different player to start a game on the mound for Louisville in 2018.
Louisville Career: The right-hander has made 10 career starts in a Bats uniform, all in 2017. He went 3-4 with a 2.73 ERA (18er/59.1ip), walking 13 and striking out 51 in his rookie Triple-A season.
Nobody's Perfect... Except Me: Mahle was thrown 2 career no-hitters through his trek in the minors, including a perfect game for the Double-A Pensacola Blue Wahoos on April 22, 2017 at Mobile. In that game, Mahle recorded all 27 outs, striking out 8 on just 88 pitches (68 strikes). Current Louisville players Josh VanMeter, Gabriel Guerrero, Taylor Sparks and Brian O'Grady were all in the starting lineup in the 1-0 win. Mahle's first career no-hitter came on June 13, 2017 with Class-A Advanced Daytona, tossing 9 innings at Jupiter in a 4-0 win. In that game, Mahle threw 105 pitches (75 strikes), allowing just one hit-by-pitch, striking out 6.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.