Winners of five straight, the 10th-ranked Louisville baseball team welcomes in-state rival Kentucky to town for the Battle of the Bluegrass at Jim Patterson Stadium on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m., ET. The game can be seen on ACC Network Extra and radio coverage will be available on 93.9 The Ville. Live scoring is available at GoCards.com.
ABOUT THE LOUISVILLE CARDINALS
Louisville closed out the first half of the regular season at 22-6 overall following a three-game sweep of Wake Forest over the weekend. The Cardinals took the opener 6-1 behind another strong effort from Reid Detmers and rode its offense to a 10-7 comeback victory in the second game. Bobby Miller then helped UofL finish off the sweep for a 5-4 win in the finale.
The Cardinals broke out the long ball in the series against Wake Forest, tallying five home runs in the final two games of the weekend. Junior All-American Logan Wyatt hit one in each game, while Alex Binelas, Zach Britton and Justin Lavey each left the yard as well.
Tuesday’s game will be the 500th for the Cardinals at Jim Patterson Stadium. Louisville is 388-111 (.778) at home since the ballpark opened in 2005.
The Cardinals began head coach Dan McDonnell’s 13th season ranked as high as fourth in the national polls. UofL is coming off a 45-19 record in 2018, its seventh straight 40-win season and the 11th in 12 seasons under McDonnell. The Cardinals advanced to the championship round of an NCAA Regional for the seventh straight season.
Kentucky comes into Tuesday’s contest at 16-12 overall, but just 3-8 in its last 11 games. The Wildcats have struggled in SEC play, turning in a 1-8 record through three conference weekends. UK won the middle game of its most recent series against Georgia, but dropped the rubber game 10-8 on Saturday.
The Wildcats have done good work on the basepaths this season, leading the SEC with 60 stolen bases. However, they rank 13th out of 14 in batting average and are last in the conference with a team ERA of 4.71.
Tuesday’s Battle of the Bluegrass will be the 109th all-time meeting between the two programs with the Wildcats leading the series 63-44-1. The two teams are all even at 28-28-1 in the 57 games played in Louisville. UofL has won nine of the last 11 games against the Wildcats, including seven straight at Jim Patterson Stadium. Under Dan McDonnell, the Cardinals are 16-11 against their in-state rival.
TEAM NOTES AND TRENDS
· Louisville pitching currently leads the ACC and ranks top 15 in the country in ERA (2.82), WHIP (1.09), shutouts (4) and hits allowed per nine innings (6.56).
· Louisville’s starting pitcher has pitched five innings or more with one earned run or fewer allowed in 15 games this season.
· UofL has had a starting pitcher throw seven no-hit innings on three occasions this season, with Reid Detmers doing it against Brown and James Madison, and Bobby Miller against Wake Forest.
· The Cardinals have been active offensively in the first inning this season, plating at least one run in the opening inning of 18 of 28 games. Louisville has scored 31 first inning runs overall and is 15-3 when scoring in the first.
· Louisville pitchers set a Jim Patterson Stadium record with 18 strikeouts against Georgia Tech on March 22. The Cardinals have struck out 10 or more in 16 games this season, with a 14-2 record when doing so.
· Logan Wyatt is third in the country with 35 walks through 28 games and is currently on pace for 70 this season. The UofL single season record in 69 by Kevin Malone in 1980. Wyatt is six walks away from reaching UofL’s top-10 career list.
· Louisville swiped a season-high nine bases on March 6 against Morehead State. It was the most since the Cardinals finished with 10 stolen bases against Eastern Kentucky on Feb. 20, 2013. UofL is currently second in the ACC and 11th in the NCAA with 44 stolen bases on the year. Louisville has finished in the top five in the country in stolen bases in four of the last six seasons.
· In the victory over Morehead State on March 6, the Cardinals set a program record with eight different players recording a stolen base.
· The Cardinals are 19-0 this season when leading after eight innings. From 2012-17, Louisville accumulated a six-year record of 266-3 when entering the ninth with a lead, including a 50-0 mark in 2017.
· UofL has won 34 of its 44 ACC series since joining the league and is 36-7 in its series finales during that span, including an 11-4 record in rubber games.
· The Cardinals have won 18 of their 23 ACC series at home since debuting in the conference.
· Twelve different Cardinals have made their Louisville debuts this season (Albanese, Binelas, Davis, Leonard, Lohman, Masterman, Metzinger, Perkins, Poland, Schmeltz, Smith and Wright). It was the collegiate debut for 11 of the 12.
· Louisville has 24 games on its schedule against teams ranked inside the top 25 in at least one of the six major preseason polls (Clemson, Connecticut, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Mississippi, NC State, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest).
· While at Louisville, coach Dan McDonnell has guided the Cardinals to four College World Series berths, seven NCAA Super Regional appearances, 11 NCAA Regional bids, eight regular season conference championships and two conference tournament titles with 37 All-Americans.
LOUISVILLE’S CONTINUED FLIRTATIONS WITH NO-HITTERS
The Cardinals have taken a no-hitter into the eighth inning on three separate occasions this season. Reid Detmers tossed seven no-hit innings against Brown on February 22 before the Bears spoiled things against the UofL bullpen with two outs in the ninth. Detmers followed it up with seven hitless innings the next week versus James Madison, only to see the bid end in the eighth.
Sunday against Wake Forest, Bobby Miller made his own run at history with seven hitless innings in his second start of the season. However, the Demon Deacons broke through against the relievers in the eighth.
It has been more than 35 years since Louisville last tossed a no-hitter, going all the way back to Dave McCormick’s gem against Cincinnati on March 26, 1983. The Cardinals have five in program history.
FOUR FORMER CARDS ON MLB OPENING DAY ROSTERS
The Major League Baseball season opened up on Thursday and four former Louisville baseball players were on Opening Day rosters.
Nick Burdi (Pittsburgh Pirates), Adam Engle (Chicago White Sox), Chad Green (New York Yankees) and Matt Koch (Arizona Diamondbacks) were each on the roster to start the 2019 season.
Since the hiring of head coach Dan McDonnell prior to the 2007 season, 64 Louisville players have signed professional contracts after being selected in the Major League Baseball Draft, including a school-record nine Cardinals in 2010.
LOUISVILLE’S WEEKEND 1-2 PUNCH DOMINATING OPPOSITION
Louisville has consistently produced strong frontline arms under Dan McDonnell and pitching coach Roger Williams. The 2019 season has been no different.
The Cardinals’ top two starters on the weekend, Reid Detmers and Nick Bennett, have been at the forefront of a Louisville pitching staff that leads the ACC in ERA (2.82), hits allowed per nine innings (6.56), shutouts (4) and WHIP (1.09).
Detmers are Bennett are a combined 9-2 through six starts each with the Cardinals 11-3 in games started by the duo. Of their 14 starts this season, the duo has allowed one run or fewer in nine. Detmers leads the ACC with a 0.92 ERA and his 76 strikeouts are the second-most in Division I. Meanwhile, Bennett is sixth in the conference with four wins on the season and is one win away from cracking Louisville’s top-10 list for career victories.
CARDINALS CONTINUE TO FIND SUCCESS IN ACC PLAY
Since joining the ACC before the 2015 season, Louisville has seen its success at the conference level spill over into its new league. The Cardinals won regular season titles in each of their first three seasons in the ACC and were voted the preseason favorite in 2019.
Louisville has won 34 of 44 conference series since joining the league. With sweeps this season against Wake Forest and at Duke, the Cardinals have tallied nine conference road sweeps over the last four-plus seasons and 19 sweeps in ACC play altogether.
Louisville is currently tied with Clemson for second in the Atlantic Division with a 9-3 start through four weekends of conference action.
FEELING AT HOME INSIDE JIM PATTERSON STADIUM
Since opening the gates at Jim Patterson Stadium in 2005, the Cardinals have won more than 77 percent of their games in the ballpark posting a 388-111 record (.778 winning percentage), including an impressive 33-4 mark during the 2017 season at the corner of Third and Central. The Cardinals are 17-4 on their home field this season. Louisville set a school record for home wins with 36 in 2016 and the Cardinals have registered 30 or more wins at home in four of the last six seasons.
LOUISVILLE LEADS COUNTRY IN WINS SINCE 2007
Dan McDonnell took the reins of the Louisville baseball program in 2007. Louisville entered 2019 with the most wins of any Division I program from 2007-18 with 554.
Most Wins Since 2007
1. Louisville 576
2. North Carolina 571
3. Florida State 570
5. Vanderbilt 559
LOUISVILLE IN NATIONAL POLLS EVERY WEEK SINCE START OF 2012
Louisville, which surpassed its previous high national ranking of No. 2 (in 2016) with the No. 1 ranking on March 13 and March 20 during the 2017 season, has enjoyed a historic run by remaining ranked in at least one major national poll every week since the release of the 2012 preseason rankings — the longest such span in school history.
Ranked in the top 25 in all six major preseason polls for 2019, the Cardinals have earned a preseason national ranking in 11 straight seasons (2008-2018) overall. Louisville entered the 2019 season ranked fourth in the D1Baseball rankings, eighth in the Perfect Game and USA Today polls, ninth in the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and NCBWA rankings and 11th by Baseball America.
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