LOUISVILLE, Kentucky – The Toledo Mud Hens fell 6-5 the Louisville Bats on Saturday afternoon at Louisville Slugger Field. The victory puts the Hens’ postseason record at 1-3 prior to tomorrow’s series finale.
The Mud Hens jumped out to an early lead after consecutive opposite-field doubles from Riley Greene and Spencer Torkelson. The lead would hardly last though, as Alejo Lopez ripped a leadoff homer off Logan Shore on the first pitch he saw to knot the game at one apiece.
Three singles in the second inning produced another Louisville run, this one putting them in front 2-1. After a walk loaded them up with one out, Lopez lined a comeback to Shore, which he gloved out of the air and then flipped over to Torkelson for a double play to end the frame.
The Bats made it three straight innings with a run after Lorezno Cedrola’s solo shot to left field started the bottom of the third. The home run was his first of the season for the Bats.
Shore once again found himself in trouble in the fourth. With men on second and third and only one out, Brady Policelli threw behind Braxton Lee at third base for a 2-5 pickoff putout. Lopez then grounded out and the score remained 3-1.
RHP Angel De Jesus gave the Mud Hens two solid innings in relief, walking a pair but not allowing a hit or run. He has not allowed a run in five of his last six appearances.
In the seventh, the Mud Hens offense broke through, all with two outs. Jacob Robson, Policelli, and Greene strung together three straight singles to cut the deficit to one run. On an 0-2 pitch, Torkelson smoked a ball over the right field wall for a three-run homer to give the Hens a 5-3 lead. A double from Rodriguez and an error and a walk loaded the bases, bringing up Josh Lester. He hit a fly ball to right field that looked like it could leave the yard for a grand slam, but Lee made the catch at the wall to finally end the inning.
LHP Locke St. John replaced De Jesus and also provided two clean innings of work out of the Hen-pen. He has a streak of six straight appearances this month without allowing a run. He has been one of the most dependable relievers all season long with an ERA of 2.62.
Righty Drew Carlton was called on in the save situation, trying to preserve Toledo’s two-run lead in the ninth. An error to start the inning immediately brought the potential tying run to the dish for the Bats and that would prove to be costly because Narciso Crook hit a two-run shot to dead-center to tie the game at five.
In the top of the tenth, the Mud Hens failed to score after a base-running miscue by Rodriguez, who was the designated runner on second base. Wladimir Pinto trotted on for Toledo, looking to keep the game tied and send it to the 11th. It wouldn’t happen though, as Michael De Leon singled to right field to break Toledo’s heart, 6-5.
The Toledo Mud Hens and Louisville Bats will play their series finale on Sunday at Louisville Slugger Field at 1:00 p.m.
- INF Spencer Torkelson has homered in back-to-back games for the second time this month.
- Since August 1st, RHP Angel De Jesus owns a 1.56 ERA in 23.1 innings.