After their seventh one run loss in ACC play on Thursday, Louisville (28-14, 9-11 ACC) left no doubt about this one, pounding the Hurricanes 11-0. For Miami (27-16, 13-10 ACC), it felt like one of the games the Cardinals have been on the other end of over the last few weeks, leaving 15 runners on base.
It was a big night for Brandon Anderson (2-5, HR, 2 RBI, R) who belted his first career home run to get the scoring started in the second inning.
B2 | BANG‼️ @brananderson8 has his FIRST CAREER BLAST‼️— Louisville Baseball (@LouisvilleBSB) April 28, 2023
Three pitches later, Eddie King Jr. (2-5, HR, 2B, RBI, 2 R) made a visit to the berm to double the lead. Not only has EKJ looked very comfortable taking over in center field, but he also continues to improve in the box as he sees more pitches. He is currently third on the team in RBI, just one behind Ryan McCoy and Jack Payton, with 31 on the season. It is going to be a lot of fun to watch him progress in his career.
B2 | BACK-TO-BACK‼️ EKJ to the berm‼️— Louisville Baseball (@LouisvilleBSB) April 28, 2023
https://t.co/NX7KE6XAbU#GoCards | @EddieKingJr17 pic.twitter.com/nndhuHDcON
Speaking of Payton (2-5, HR, 2 RBI, R), he extended his hit streak to 10 games, the longest of the season for the Cards. He continues to display more and more power this season, crushing his 10th home run, tying McCoy for the most on the team. What impresses me about Payton is his ability to hit the ball out of the park in all three fields. He is not a dead pull hitter, forcing defenses to play him straight up.
B6 | Oppo ‼️ @2jackpayton leaves the yard for number on the year‼️— Louisville Baseball (@LouisvilleBSB) April 29, 2023
Gavin Kilen, Isaac Humphrey, and JT Benson each chipped in with two hits apiece, as Louisville pounded out 16 hits on the evening.
Ryan Hawks (4.2 IP, 8 K, 8 H, 2 BB) left the game with a lead, but was not eligible for the win because he was unable to complete the 5th inning. Hawks allowed more baserunners than he would have liked, but he continued to battle and kept the Hurricanes off the scoreboard, stranding runners in each of the innings he worked.
He turned things over to Kayden Campbell (W, 1-0) who picked up the first win of his career. Campbell (1.1 IP, K, H) continues to get inserted in less-than-ideal situations and more often than not, he delivers. With a 6-0 lead, the freshman inherited the bases loaded with two outs, recording a huge strikeout to get out of the inning.
Kade Grundy (3 IP, 2 H, 5 K) finished off Miami for the final three frames. Grundy has been the mid-week starter for much of the year, but I like him as a relief pitcher on the weekends as well. It gives the staff an additional quality arm and lets him see higher quality opponents to prepare him for a potential weekend rotation role next season.
In other positive news, Christian Knapczyk did participate in pre-game warmups, taking infield and BP. He did not play, but that shows he is getting closer.
Carson Liggett (7-0, 1.64 ERA) will take the mound for Louisville on Saturday, but the Hurricanes have not released their starter as of Friday evening. Behind Liggett, Tate Kuehner has not thrown this weekend, so I anticipate we will see him at some point.
First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 PM as the Cards have a huge opportunity to win the series and pickup their third Top 20 win this week.
Lets pack Jim Patterson!