Bats lose thriller in series opener, 8-6 [Sports]

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The Louisville Bats lost a heartbreaker Thursday night to the Rochester Red Wings, 8-6. In a back and forth game, the Red Wings got the final say with a two-run ninth to take the lead for good. It was the first of a four game series between the two teams and the start of an eight game homestand for the Bats.

Matt Carson and Clete Thomas, who had two RBIs each in the game, both had RBI singles in the ninth against Bats reliever Jordan Smith to break a 6-6 tie.

It was the first runs Smith had given up since May 26. The Bats fell to a season-low 26 games under the .500 mark, at 21-47.

Louisville started the scoring with a three spot in the second inning. After Dioner Navarro and Bill Rhinehart each walked to start the inning, Danny Dorn ripped an RBI double to put the Bats on the board. Three batters later, Felix Perez followed suit with a two-run double to make it 3-0. It was just the 24th time in 68 games Louisville has scored the first run of the game.

Rochester (30-36) broke through in the fourth when Thomas went deep for his third homer of the season to make it 3-1.

The Bats responded with a run of their own in the fourth on an RBI single from Perez.

After getting a run on an RBI single from Carson in the fifth, the Red Wings took the lead with a four run sixth. After Bats reliever Wirfin Obispo walked Pedro Florimon with the bases loaded, Nick Christiani came in and gave up a three run double to Danny Valencia to put the Wings up 6-4.

Louisville came right back in the bottom half of the sixth with a two-run homer from Corky Miller to tie the game at six. It was Miller’s third homer of the season.

Miller finished the game with a pair of hits. Perez, who finished with three RBIs, had two hits as well. Dorn and Navarro both finished with three hits. The remaining players in the Bats’ lineup combined to go 0-for-20.

Bill Bray, who is on a rehab assignment from the Cincinnati Reds, pitched a perfect seventh inning for the Bats. Bray struck out the side on just twelve pitches.

Game two of the four game series will be Friday. The Bats are scheduled to send Chad Reineke (2-4, 4.30 ERA) to the mound against Liam Hendriks (5-0, 1.94 ERA). First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

Scott Rolen is scheduled to make a rehab start with Bats Friday.

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