When the highlight of an evening at a baseball game is meeting the manÂ in the stadium that bears his name, one has to have been looking high and low for the positive in the University of Louisville’s 8-4 loss to Vanderbilt.
Jim Patterson was at Jim Patterson Field, agonizing with fellow U of L fans about lethargic hitting and inadequate fielding in a drawn-out affair that consumed three hours and 15 minutes. The observer thanked the man for the umpteenth time for his generous gift (the stadium opened in 2005), then returned to his seat for some harsh reality.
The Cards played like the observer felt after missing his Sunday afternoon nap, groggy, going through the motions, a step off here, a slow reaction there, a team of sleepwalkers with little sense of direction. An unnecessarily long second inning set the tone for the evening. Vanderbilt capitalizing on painful-to-watch errors by John Dao and Chris Dominguez mixing in four singles with a bevy of bunts and bobbles .
U of L partisans were forced to keep reminding themselves that this was a powerful Louisville team, capable of offensive fireworks, that fact keeping the majority of the 4,006 fans in the park through the bottom of the ninth.
A eerily quiet game,Â the silence interrupted only by a tiny but rowdy group of Vanderbilt fans (they don’t travel well) with their S-E-C chants and stomping on the metal bleachers. Nowhere near enough noise to wake up the slumping Louisville bats.