DURHAM, N.C. - The Louisville Bats (12-22) dropped the opening game of a three-game series with the Durham Bulls (22-14) on Tuesday night at Durham Bulls Athletic Park, 3-1.
Tonight marked the 12th time this season that Louisville surrendered a lead in a loss, accounting for over half the team's losses in 2018.
Left-handed starter Justin Nicolino was excellent for the Bats, going 6.0 innings and giving up one earned run on four hits, with one walk and three strikeouts on 81 pitches, 49 strikes. Nicolino's third quality start ties Robert Stephenson for most on the staff this season.
Steve Selsky's solo home run in the fourth inning provided the only run for Louisville in the ballgame, with Nicolino giving up a run in the seventh before right-hander Tanner Rainey gave up a pair in the eighth to give the Bulls their 3-1 lead.
The Bats struck out a season-high 17 times on the night, with Durham pitchers Mike Franco, Colin Poche, Diego Castillo and Adam Kolarek shutting down the Louisville offense, with Kolarek (3-0, 1.23) getting the win.
Louisville and Durham are back at it tomorrow with first pitch slated for 7:05 p.m. Wednesday night. Left-hander Brandon Finnegan (0-1, 5.40) will make his second start for Louisville this season and his first since being optioned to Louisville, with Durham's starter yet to be announced.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.