Today has been full of talk about the BatCats. For someone that has covered every UK Baseball game for the last three years, I couldn’t be happier. Now it’s time to look ahead to the game. The build up is over, and now it is time to execute. Coach Mingione made a plea that the people of Lexington would come out to help break another attendance record in tonight’s Regional Championship. But as for Mingione and his team, they will be taking the field in the biggest game in UK Baseball history.
Think that is an exaggeration? It isn’t. Kentucky has never advanced to a Super Regional, much less the College World Series. The closest comparisons would be the 2014 Regional Championship against Louisville or 1988 Regional Championship against Stanford. Waiting for them in the Super Regional will be Louisville for a best of three series. A win tonight would turn the program into an unprecedented direction. Louisville looked beatable towards the end of their season, so they could definitely slip up against UK.
“You look up and you have the greatest fans in the country cheering us on. The fans tonight were phenomenal, they poured into us so much and they helped us out so much. We’re so grateful for them, we hope we get all those people back tomorrow and more.” -Riley Mahan after last night’s game.
Before the Super Regional, UK needs to get past NC State tonight. The BatCats will use a committee of pitchers to get the job done against the Pack. Mingione said that everyone but maybe Zack Thompson will be available tonight. Zach Logue, Logan Salow, Chris Machamer, and perhaps Sean Hjelle will likely see time in the elimination game. NC State is in a little bit of a better spot in terms of pitching. Johnny Piedmonte should be ready to go for the Pack along with a full bullpen behind him. But as UK showed last night, a rested bullpen means nothing if they can’t stop a team from scoring. The BatCats roughed up NC State’s staff last night with eight runs in the first six innings.
For updates, follow @TreyHuntsmanKSR on Twitter. Here is some info for tonight’s game:
First Pitch: 7:00 ET
Television: SEC Network
Radio: Neil Price on iHeart Radio
Two hours from first pitch and the wind is blowing pretty hard in from RF and out toward LF corner. We’ll see if it stays that way.
– Kentucky Baseball (@UKBaseball) June 5, 2017