Cats fail to complete regular-season sweep of Cardinals


Trey Dawson hits a home run in UK’s game at Jim Patterson Stadium against the Louisville Cardinals on April 17, 2018, in Louisville, Kentucky. UK lost the game 8-2. Photo by Barry Westerman

Charlee Schaefer

The No. 6 UK baseball team fell to the Louisville Cardinals 8-2 on Tuesday evening, failing to complete the regular-season sweep.

The second “Battle of the Bluegrass” matchup of the year went in the Cards’ favor after consecutive multi-run innings. The Cards scored all of their runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.

“We didn’t do enough to win. That’s the bottom line,” head coach Nick Mingione said after the loss.

The night was tense as any matchup between UK and UofL is, no matter the sport. The rivalry is arguably one of the biggest in sports, and an incident in the bottom of the sixth inning went south fast.

Louisville’s Jake Snider hit a home run to right field and flipped his bat before taking his trip around the bases. In the next at-bat, Devin Mann stepped to the plate and freshman pitcher Jimmy Ramsey hit him with a pitch. The stands and dugouts immediately erupted. 

The home plate umpire warned both dugouts, and many comments followed from both sides. The stands and dugouts were vocal for the remainder of the game.

UK used seven pitchers on the night. The bullpen failed to execute when they were needed most. In the three big innings, many pitching changes were made but it only seemed to throw more gas on the fire.

Offensively, Trey Dawson hit a home run to left field in the top of the third, giving UK the early lead.

The Cats did not score again until the top of the eighth when Louisville made a pitching change with runners on first and third. Luke Becker grounded out and scored a run, but the Cats couldn’t come up with anything else. 

Mingone talked about how fast this team has been able to flush wins and said this loss does not hurt more than any other would. He thinks the seven-game home stand will go in the club’s favor as they have performed very well at Cliff Hagan Stadium this season. 

“It’s nice to get back home even for a couple SEC series that are coming up. That should be key,” Mingione said. “I just want to keep going and keep winning series. That’s the bottom line.” 

The Cats head back to Lexington this week to prepare for the 2018 National Champion Florida Gators to come to town. The Gators have been ranked No. 1 for seven straight weeks and show no signs of slowing down. The series will kick off on Thursday at Cliff Hagan Stadium.