Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?
April 8, 2007: Louisville Bats 13, Toledo Mud Hens 3
Homer Bailey had a reasonably successful night. Yorman Bazardo did not. The Reds pulled ahead early, getting revenge for the previous night's thrashing, and taking three out of four from the Mud Hens.
Bubba brought the first run home. He came up in the 1st inning. No outs, Godwin on 1B via a single. He watched the first pitch go by as a ball, then smoked the second offering. The line drive to right bounced off the wall, missing a home run by only a couple of feet. RBI triple for Bubba! 1-0, Bats. Votto, up next, hit a fly ball to left. It was deep enough that the speedy Bubba would have scored anyway, but the fielder Ryan Raburn dropped the ball. Votto ended up on 2B, while Bubba scored easily. It was ruled a sac fly and an error.
It was a sign of things to come for the Mud Hens. Their starter struggled, their fielders seemed to have holes in their gloves. And their offense never seriously threatened.
Bubba came to the plate again the very next inning. Two outs, one on. He walked on four pitches, but was stranded when Votto grounded out to end the inning.
The 3rd inning drove a stake into the Hens' heart. The Bats batted around; I thought for awhile there that they might bat around twice. After the first three batters got on base, Bazardo was replaced with lefty Corey Hamman. Bubba, the 8th batter of the inning, got the first out. He came up with the bases loaded, and got ahead in the count, 3-0. Called strike, then what looked like ball 4. Bubba started to take his base, when the umpire ruled it a strike. (He wuz robbed!) Full count. Bubba swung at the next pitch, and just fouled it...into the catcher's glove.
Hamman settled down after that. Or maybe the Bats just weren't trying all that hard, with 13 runs on the board. Aside from a Bellhorn walk in the 8th, the Bats went down in order for the rest of the game.
Bubba came up again in the 4th inning. Two outs, none on. Foul, foul, ball, ball, then he flew out to shallow CF. The SS caught it over his shoulder, Jeter-like.
Bubba's last at-bat was in the 7th. Two outs, none on. He made the pitcher work: ball, foul, swinging strike, ball, foul, ball, foul - then he finally went down swinging.
Bubba's line for the night: 1 for 4, with a triple, a run scored, an RBI, and a walk. Not bad, but given the mayhem the Bats were wreaking, I was kind of hoping for more. Yeah, I'm greedy.
Bubba's now hitting .200 / .333 / .600 / .933.
Homer Bailey gave up three walks and one home run (to Timo Perez), but no other hits. His line:
5-1/3 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 4 SO, 83 pitches.
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