The Louisville Bats are on the verge of a record breaking losing season this year. They are currently 11-26 and on pace to lose 100 or more games for the first time in over 30 years. Here is your fresh, hot off the press, Bats Sunday Notebook:
Late to the party
The Bats given up the first run of the game 26 out of 37 games this season and have fallen behind first nine straight games. They are 3-23 when their opponents strike first. By contrast, the Bats are a solid 8-3 when denting the board first. The last time the Bats scored first was May 3, a game in which they won 4-3 in ten innings over the Durham Bulls.
No bats for Bats
The Bats have a league-worst .230 batting average going into play Sunday. They are 10th (of 14 teams) in the league with a .360 slugging percentage and last in on-base percentage at .300. They’ve struck out a league leading 312 times. That averages out to just over eight per game. They’ve drawn the second fewest walks (112) in the league and have a grand total of 126 runs batted in, good for 11th. Going into play Saturday, the Bats were hitting .198 with runners in scoring position, also the worst in the league.
Jeff Francis has been the Bats’ best starter to this point in the season, although his record may not show it. Francis, 31, is 2-4 in eight starts for the Bats with a 4.17 ERA. He has thrown a quality start in five of his eight games and leads the league with 49.2 innings pitched. Francis is second in the league with 47 strikeouts. Francis’ best outing came April 27 when he outdueled Norfolk’s Steve Johnson to the tune of a 2-1 victory. Francis went eight innings giving up just one run on three hits, walked three and struck out nine.
Dinoer Navarro must really like playing at Louisville Slugger Field. He does not have a hit on the road but is 14-for-28 at home. His season average is .298 and he has an on-base percentage of .351. Navarro is also slugging .404 on the season. He is 0-for-19 on the road.
Janish being missed
On April 30, Paul Janish was placed on the disabled list with a fractured left wrist he suffered in a game April 29. Since then, the Bats are 2-11 and had a losing streak of five from May 4-8 and are currently on a three game losing streak. Before hitting the shelf, Janish had a slash line of .315/.390/.521 (AVG/OBP/SLG). He led the team in all three categories.
The road ahead
The Bats play the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs Sunday and Monday to wrap a four game series and eight game homestand. They then hit the road ten game and eleven days where they will play the Rochester Red Wings four times, Lehigh Valley four times, and the Indianapolis Indians twice before returning home May 26.
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