Vandy Wins the Battle of the Barrel

Dores hold off Cardinals for 4-2 win

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Vanderbilt held off a late rally by Louisville on Tuesday night to win the Battle of the Barrel, 4-2, at Hawkins Field.

Vanderbilt starting pitcher Devin Futrell earned the win with 5.0 innings of work. Futrell held Louisville to one run on three hits and struck out six batters.

Louisville took a 1-0 lead on an RBI double by Zion Rose in the top of the first but would be kept off the scoreboard until the ninth inning.

Jonathan Vastine provided an immediate answer in the home half of the first inning, sending the first pitch over the wall in right-center field to tie the game at 1-1. Vanderbilt has hit five leadoff homers this season, two by Vastine.

After a walk by RJ Austin, Davis Diaz singled to left and the pair advanced to second and third on an error. Alan Espinal drew another walk to load the bases. Camden Kozeal singled to left to bring home Austin and give the Dores a 2-1 lead after one full.

Vandy doubled its lead in the bottom of the fifth on one hits and a pair of errors. Matthew Polk reached on an interference call on the catcher and moved up to second on a sac bunt and to third on a wild pitch. Jonathan Vastine then worked a walk and stole second. On Vastine’s stolen base, the Louisville catcher threw behind Polk at third and the ball got away down the line in left, allowing Polk to come home and Vastine to move up to third.

Vastine then scored on a groundout by Austin to give the Dores a 4-1 advantage.

Louisville got a run back on a solo homer in the top of the ninth and put the tying run on second with two outs. Miller Green took over on the mound with the bases loaded and ended the game with a strikeout to earn his third save on the season.

With the win, Vanderbilt has won the Battle of the Barrel for the second consecutive season and evens the rivalry series at 6-6 since the two teams began playing for the trophy in 2012.

The Commodores wrap up the home slate this weekend at top-ranked Tennessee comes to Hawkins Field for a three-game series beginning Friday.