The University of Louisville will play host to the University of Kentucky in baseball this weekend with a spot in the College World Series on the line. The best-of-three series will be played in front of a sold out crowd on Friday at noon, Saturday at noon, and, if necessary, Sunday at — you guessed it — noon o’clock.
Excitement is running wild in both cities and within the two programs as it is easily the biggest head-to-head series in the rivalry’s storied history. Kentucky, playing in its first ever Super Regional, hopes to upset Louisville to punch its ticket to Omaha; while Louisville, the sixth-ranked team in the country, looks to return to the College World Series for the fourth time under head coach Dan McDonnell.
Now before I go on, I should make it very clear that baseball is not my expertise. I went to a Cincinnati Reds game in like third grade and got tossed out of a handful of Thirsty Thursdays in Lexington in my prime; but outside of that, America’s pastime ain’t my thing. That being said, I put myself on assignment to scout the Cardinals for all of you Kentucky fans out there, and scout the Cardinals I did.
Below you’ll find everything you need to know about the Wildcats’ upcoming opponent and future Louisville Super Regional runner-up…
They dyed their hair blond for the postseason.
Although, pitcher Jake Sparger opted for the red mohawk instead.
If for some reason you didn’t hate Louisville before, you do now.
One of the star players is from Lexington and originally committed to Kentucky out of high school. (So, he is a traitor.)
A top-100 MLB draft prospect, Louisville short stop Devin Hairston almost ended up in blue and white for his college career. He committed to Kentucky as a young star at Tates Creek High School in Lexington to join his older brother, Dorian Hairston, on the Wildcats baseball team. But then something happened and the younger Hairston flipped his commitment to the dark side, and now he is one of the key components and brightest stars on Louisville’s roster.
It’s a really sad story of a young boy losing his way.
They play in Long John Silver’s Stadium.
Technically, it’s Jim Patterson Stadium. But Jim Patterson is known for founding Long John Silver’s, so we’re unofficially changing its name to Long John Silver’s Stadium right now.
Spread the word: $1.99 Fish and Fries before 6 p.m. with a free hush puppy for anyone over 60. Present your ticket stub at any location following the game for free corn on the cob and a 50 percent shot at food poisoning.
(Note: Long John Silver’s was founded in Lexington, yet another example of Louisville relying on its rival city.)
The Louisville pitchers may or may not use pine tar, so I read on Twitter once.
My understanding is pine tar is frowned upon in baseball. And to be fair, I don’t see pine tar in that screenshot. And to be fairer, I don’t know what pine tar looks like. And to be fairer than that, I would use the hell out of pine tar if I pitched.
I’m just passing along another man’s observation from last Sunday and presenting a better look for you pine tar conspiracy theorists out there.
To me it looks like he wiped bare-handed after eating at Long John Silver’s.
Head coach Dan McDonnell licks microphones when he can’t answer a question.
For example: “Hey Coach, are you confident your team will beat Kentucky this weekend?”
See? Told ya.
Meanwhile, pitching coach Roger Williams wants you to f— off.
Louisville, always classy.
Brendan McKay is the best player in college baseball and he may be the best two-way player in history.
Pitcher/first baseman Brendan McKay will go No. 1 or No. 2 overall in the MLB draft and he’ll make more money before he’s 25 than I’ll make in a lifetime, so I have nothing negative to say about his game.
But I have no problem saying his postseason hairdo makes him look like an asshole:
Speaking of bad hair…
The second baseman with cornrows is so, so Louisville.
And you can’t lose to a white guy with cornrows, can you?