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Syracuse loses series-opening slugfest against Louisville, 17-12, on Tuesday night  

Carlos Cortes had two doubles and a home run on Tuesday night for Syracuse. (Herm Card)
May 23, 2023

Syracuse, NY – The Syracuse Mets and Louisville Bats (Triple-A Cincinnati Reds) played a baseball game that looked like a real-life video game on Tuesday night. The two teams combined for 29 runs on 32 hits with the Bats outlasting the Mets for a 17-12 win in a wild series

Syracuse, NY – The Syracuse Mets and Louisville Bats (Triple-A Cincinnati Reds) played a baseball game that looked like a real-life video game on Tuesday night. The two teams combined for 29 runs on 32 hits with the Bats outlasting the Mets for a 17-12 win in a wild series opener at NBT Bank Stadium. The teams used a combined 14 pitchers in the scoring bonanza that took more than three and a half hours to play.

Early on, it looked like Louisville (22-23) would roll to a blowout win, as the Bats scored nine runs combined in the first two innings on eight total hits. The Bats roared out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first on an RBI double from Matt Reynolds and a two-run single from TJ Hopkins, both of which came with two outs.

The news for Louisville got even better in the top of the second, scoring six more runs on five hits to make it a 9-0 advantage. The Bats sent 11 total men to the plate in the second, powered by a three-run homer from Reynolds in the frame coupled with a solo shot from Hopkins. Two walks, three singles and a fielding error tossed in the mix helped to bring the additional runs home.

Staring down the massive early deficit, Syracuse (19-27) began mounting a furious rally. In the bottom of the second, the Mets remarkably scored six runs of their own to make it a 9-6 game entering the top of the third. Syracuse had five hits in their massive second inning, sending ten men to the plate in the process. The frame was highlighted by a two-run homer from Jonathan Araúz, a two-run double from Ronny Mauricio, an RBI single from DJ Stewart, and an RBI double from Jaylin Davis to cap off the scoring barrage.

In the bottom of the third, Syracuse scored twice again to cut the deficit to just one run at 9-8. All the scoring action came with two outs. Lorenzo Cedrola walked to extend the inning, followed by a Carlos Cortes double that put runners on second and third with two outs. Then, Danny Mendick grounded a single into left field that plated them both and made it a 9-8 game.

Louisville briefly extended the lead back to two runs in the top of the fourth, manufacturing a run to make it a 10-8 game. Jason Vosler walked, and Reynolds singled to start the inning, putting runners on first and second with nobody out. After Hopkins struck out, Michael Siani walked to load up the bases with one out. The next batter, Chuckie Robinson, lofted a fly ball deep enough into left field to score Vosler on a sacrifice fly out and turn the game into a 10-8 score.

That lead wouldn’t last as the Mets completed their stupendous rally in the bottom of the fourth and took the lead for the first time on the night. With Stewart and Luis Guillorme both standing on base with one out, Araúz came back to the plate and did damage one more time, lofting a fly ball over the left-field fence for a three-run shot and an 11-10 lead for Syracuse. Araúz’s two-homer game was his first of the season, and he finished the night with five runs driven in. This is the first multi-homer game in Araúz’s professional career.

Unfortunately for the Mets, their lead would not last. Louisville surged the rest of the way to claim victory, scoring seven total times in the last five innings to reclaim the lead for good. The Bats scored once in the fifth, twice in the sixth, twice in the eighth, and two final times in the ninth to pull away and take the series opener.

In the fifth, Nick Martini hit a solo home run for Louisville to tie the game, 11-11. In the sixth, a two-run single from Alejo Lopez gave the Bats the lead for good at 13-11. In the eighth and ninth, Louisville was powered by the long ball. Chuckie Robinson hit a solo shot in the eighth and a two-run bomb in the ninth to cap off the sensational night of scoring for the Bats. Martini also added an RBI single in the eighth, his third of the evening.

By the end of the ballgame, the numbers were incredibly crooked for the Louisville offense. Every single batter reached base at least twice, while five different batters had at least two hits. Six different players scored at least two runs and five different batters drove in at least two runs. Players who had superior nights included Alejo Lopez (4-for-6, two doubles, two runs scored, two runs driven in), Nick Martini (4-for-6, three singles, a home run, three runs driven in), Matt Reynolds (4-for-6, two singles, a double, a home run, four runs driven in) and Chuckie Robinson (two home runs, four runs driven in).

Syracuse’s last run came in the bottom of the seventh on a solo shot from Carlos Cortes, who finished the night 3-for-5 with two doubles, the homer, and three runs scored. The Mets also put up some crooked numbers of their own offensively: every single batter reached base at least once, eight of them reached at least twice, and four different players had at least two hits.

Syracuse is home all week at NBT Bank Stadium, taking on the Triple-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, the Louisville Reds. Game two of the six-game series is set for an 11:05 a.m. first pitch on Wednesday morning.