THE WEEK: At Least It Ends Well Friday, Jun 26 2015 

Welcome to THE WEEK – LouisvilleKY.com’s almost weekly wrap of the River City. This time the big news came on Friday, as the Supreme Court ruled on gay marriage, and your Facebook feed exploded with nice people rejoicing.

A Kentucky case was at the center of the argument. And, of course, let’s all not forget that Gov. Steve Beshear once argued in favor of the gay marriage ban because his lawyers claimed gay marriage would hurt the state’s birth rate. That was after Jack Conway realized it was a bad argument and refused to defend the Kentucky law.

Let’s hear the reaction from Mayor Greg Fischer:

“This is a monumental win for equal treatment under the law, and I’m pleased that Louisville couples were part of this historic decision. Louisville has a proud history of leadership on fairness and civil rights. Fifty-two years ago, Louisville became the first city in the South to pass an ordinance banning discrimination in public accommodations based on skin color. Four years later, our city was the first in the South to enact an open housing law. And, in the late 1990s, Louisville led our state by passing a Fairness ordinance that banned discrimination based on sexual orientation in housing, public accommodations and employment. Our nation took a giant leap forward today.”

WaterfrontWedOn the Waterfront: I hadn’t attended a Waterfront Wednesday show this year, and this week’s event was absolutely packed. Remember when you could bring a blanket or ride your bike and get really close to the stage? I do. It may have been cooler then, but it’s alright now.

Proper Distance from the Flag: Even rednecks and Republicans were actively distancing themselves from anything to do with the Confederate Flag this week, and Mitch McConnell called for the removal of the Jeff Davis statue in Frankfort. Web sites offering merchandise, like Cafe Press, cleared their caches of the image, calling its use “hateful speech.”

NBA Pipeline: Kentucky dominated the NBA Draft Thursday night, providing the top pick and five others to NBA teams. Cards Terry Rozier and Montrezl Harrell were picked up, too. But UK’s Aaron Harrison was left out.

Swell Beer Event: Come on out to Casks for a Cause Saturday on Main Street. Media members have created special brews – which could be dangerous.

rs103AmandaDuffy

Amanda Duffy

And Then Soccer: I went to my first professional soccer game last week, and I’m going back Saturday. Listen in as Louisville City FC GM Amanda Duffy explains the local phenomenon, and where it’s going, on the Rusty Show.

40 Youngsters: Check out Business First’s 40 Under 40 List, announced this week.

A Principled Stand: As Chris Thieneman points out in his latest video update, he could have made his assault charges go away by writing a check. But Chris know he’s right, and that the charges against him were brought by a vindictive woman looking for easy money.

1796956_10155762653310440_330874455857850520_oA Book, with a Derby Twist: Check out Sam Miller’s book Interstate Providence, the story of a man’s long journey after losing his fiancee and his job. And you’ll find 120 names of Derby winners in the text. He talks about it on Rusty.

Our Garden Grows: Our own Jackie Bentley found some surprises when she back to her garden after a week’s vacation.

 

U of L’s Rozier to Celtics; Montrezl is a Rocket Friday, Jun 26 2015 

Louisville’s Rozier, Harrell Selected in NBA Draft

Rozier went to the Boston Celtics with the 16th overall selection, Harrell to the Houston Rockets with the 32nd pick

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Two University of Louisville men’s basketball players were selected in the 2015 NBA Draft Thursday night.

Guard Terry Rozier was selected in the first round by the Boston Celtics as the 16th overall pick in the draft, while forward Montrezl Harrell was taken in the second round by the Houston Rockets as the 32nd selection.

“We are so excited and so happy for Terry.,” said UofL Coach Rick Pitino.  “He’s one of the hardest workers with the most professional attitude any coach could want.  He is just scratching his potential and will work his tail off for the Celtics.  All of Card Nation is thrilled for him.”

“We’re all surprised that Montrezl slipped out of the first round, but it really doesn’t matter,” said Pitino.  “He’ll get a contract from Houston.  The most important thing is to be drafted by the right team with a chance to play.  He certainly was drafted by the right team with a chance to play.  Some players would have a chip on their shoulder to prove people wrong (about not being selected in the first round).  Montrezl will have a boulder his shoulder, and there’s not a doubt in my mind that he will.

“Obviously, both players have worked very hard to help make Louisville successful.  We hope that Louisville had played a big role in making them successful.”

Rozier led the Cardinals and was fourth in the ACC in scoring (17.1 ppg) last season and also led the ACC in steals (2.0 spg).  An All-ACC second team selection, Rozier was twice named ACC Player of the Week, including Dec. 22 after scoring a career-high 32 points at Western Ky.; and on Feb. 2.  He averaged 20.1 points in the Cards’ 17 road or neutral site games, including 20 points in Louisville’s nine conference road games.

A 6-1 guard from Youngstown, Ohio, Rozier and Notre Dame’s Jerian Grant were the only two players to rank among the top 10 in the ACC in scoring, steals and free throw percentage.  He made the second-highest scoring improvement in the ACC since last season, rising from his 7.0 average as a freshman to his final 17.1 average.  Named to the 2015 All-ACC Academic Men’s Basketball team, Rozier was among the top rebounding guards in the ACC, averaging 5.6 boards (23rd in ACC).

Harrell, who was honored with the inaugural Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award, averaged 15.7 points (eighth in the ACC), 9.2 rebounds (second in the ACC, 32nd in the nation) and shot 56.6 percent from the field (third in the ACC, 22nd in the nation). He helped the Cardinals post a 27-9 record and reach their fifth NCAA Elite Eight in the past eight years.

A 6-8 forward from Tarboro, N.C., Harrell was named to the 2015 All-ACC Academic Men’s Basketball team and was the ACC Player of the Week three times. He totaled 1,294 points in his three seasons (tied for 31st all-time at UofL). He finished his career with 777 rebounds, just 36 short of the top 15 in career rebounds at Louisville. He is Louisville’s career leader in dunks with 221 and slammed a school-record 97 dunks as a sophomore.

A total of 68 former Louisville players have been selected in the NBA Draft, including five in the last three years.  Last year, Russ Smith was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers in the second round of the 2014 NBA Draft with the 47th overall pick, and was subsequently traded to the New Orleans Pelicans.  Gorgui Dieng was a first-round selection and the 21st overall pick by the Utah Jazz in 2013, with his rights subsequently traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves, where he has played the last two seasons. Peyton Siva was a second round choice of the Detroit Pistons in 2013 with the 56th pick overall.

U of L has produced 22 first-round NBA Draft choices, including 11 in the top ten and five among the top three picks (Pervis Ellison first in 1989; Wes Unseld second in 1968; Darrell Griffith second in 1980; Charlie Tyra second in 1957; Rodney McCray third in 1983).

And at UK:

Kentucky had six players drafted, including four lottery picks, headed by #1 Karl-Anthony Towns.

Cards’ New Football Uni’s Unveiled Thursday, Jun 25 2015 

The University of Louisville and adidas today unveiled the new Uncaged Cardinal Primeknit strategy football uniform, which will make its on-field debut on Saturday, September 5th vs. Auburn for the season opener.

Screen Shot 2015-06-25 at 12.14.08 PMDrawing inspiration from the Louisville mascot, the new uniform brings the Cardinal to life like never before – from head to toe – with an all-new, photo-real, high-def Uncaged Cardinal. Designed to represent the football team’s style of play, the Uncaged Cardinal is fierce, attacking and always on the offensive.

At the center of the design, the helmet features the new Uncaged Cardinal on one side, while a chrome and red English “L” pays homage to Louisville’s heritage on the other side. Further infusing the new theme, the shoulders of the jersey feature chrome and red wings – symbolizing the Uncaged Cardinal in flight, which accent the chrome lettering and numbering outlined in bold red on the jersey, while the pants showcase a chrome and red English “L” on the left leg to match the helmet.

Made with a cutting-edge, proprietary yarn blend that increases durability and abrasion resistance, Primeknit is the newest generation of the adidas TECHFIT football uniform system. Primeknit keeps players cool and increases range of motion, giving athletes an unrivaled level of comfort and allowing them to perform at their highest levels. The jersey’s redesigned padlock system improves tension over the shoulder pads. The jersey’s redesigned padlock system improves tension over the shoulder pads, while the compression fit adheres to the player, making it difficult for opponents to grab, hold or tackle.

Rounding out the head-to-toe package is the TECHFIT gun show baselayer, featuring an oversized photo-real, high-def Uncaged Cardinal and red English “L” overlay on the chest, the adizero 4.0 Uncaged Cardinal gloves, and the adizero 5-Star 4.0 cleats, emblazoned with the new photo-real, high-def Uncaged Cardinal, wrapped 180 degrees around the upper of the cleat.

The adizero 5-Star 4.0, lighter than any competitor cleat at 8.1 ounces, has a SPRINTSKIN upper with SHOCKWEB reinforcement and a SPRINTFRAME plate that provides maximum acceleration and multi-directional traction.

Saturday’s Downs After Dark Final Event of Historic Spring Meet at Louisville’s Churchill Down’s Wednesday, Jun 24 2015 

Louisville, Ky., – Join Churchill Downs this Saturday night (June 27) to close the most historic Spring Meet in 37 years with a bang at “Downs After Dark” presented by Stella Artois and Finlandia Vodka.

Guests are encouraged to break out their best cowboy and cowgirl duds to celebrate Saturday’s Boots, Brew & BBQ theme while they enjoy draft beer, specialty cocktails, BBQ food trucks and 11 races, including four marquee stakes events.

Nashville music artist Justin Adams will bring his high energy country-meets-rock ‘n’ roll performance to the Plaza, where guests can also test their staying power on a mechanical bull.

Bet or No Bet presented by Thorntons will give a lucky fan in each of Races 6-9 the chance to win a $1,000 wager on the horse of their choice or walk away with a $100 Thorntons’ gift card.

DownsAfterDark2

The night’s racing will feature the $200,000 Firecracker Stakes (Grade II); the $100,000 Bashford Manor (GIII); the $100,000 Debutante; and the $70,000-added Kelly’s Landing overnight stakes.

Tickets are still available for the new Courtyard, where fans 21 and over can see the action up close in a picnic-like area along the track’s homestretch. Courtyard tickets include draft beer and wine, small plates and an official racing program.

WHEN:    Saturday Night, June 27

Gates open at 5 p.m. – midnight, first post at 6 p.m.

Live Music by Justin Adams in the Plaza begins at 7:50 p.m.

Mechanical bull rides at 7 p.m.11 p.m. (subject to change)

TICKETS: Available at www.churchilldowns.com

$69: NEW: The Courtyard. See the races up close in this new over 21 garden area along the track’s homestretch. Tickets include draft beer and wine, small plates and an official racing program

$70: Millionaires Row, includes gourmet buffet and official racing program

$25: Reserved third floor box seats, includes official racing program

$10: General Admission

New Louisville Slugger Bat Honors Wounded Warriors With Special Bat Friday, Jun 12 2015 

woundedwarriorbat

LOUISVILLE, KY – The Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team™ (WWAST) has a desire to inspire. And it has. With the help of modern prosthetic technology, the WWAST has left its mark on hundreds of thousands of people who’ve watched these courageous veterans hit, run, slide, dive, catch and throw. Now Louisville Slugger® – the team’s first sponsor – is honoring these brave soldiers by creating a special edition of its new 2016 performance bat. It’s called the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team Super Z.

“I was speechless when Slugger told me they wanted to name a performance bat after the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team,” said WWAST founder David Van Sleet. “ Slugger has been so good to us from day one, providing all of our top-of-the-line playing gear and equipment bags which allow us to compete at a high level. That’s very important because we only play against able-bodied teams.”

SBSZ16A-B 300dpi

The Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team is comprised of Military, Iraq and Afghanistan active-duty servicemen and veterans who have lost limbs. Most team members played college or high school baseball.

“We love to play the game,” said shortstop Matt Kinsey, a U.S. Army veteran and former college baseball player who lost a foot when he stepped on a land mine. “Now we get to swing a great bat with our name on it. That’s pretty cool.”

SBWZ16A-B Super Z WW 300dpi

The Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team Super Z is a 100-percent-composite, two-piece bat with Slugger’s exclusive iST Xs Technology. This technology creates a massive sweet spot and extreme spring off the bat barrel.

“It’s an awesome bat,” Kinsey said. “I’ve put hundreds of swings on mine, and it has pop. I’ve been playing softball at a high level for a long time, and it truly is the best softball bat I’ve ever swung.”

While Slugger’s research and development staff created the bat’s performance technology, members of the WWAST helped design the cosmetics. Kinsey and Marine veteran Josh Wege, both injured in Afghanistan, sat down with the Slugger graphics staff to develop the bat’s red, white, blue and gray design. They added an image of a dog tag plus the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team’s logo and motto – Life Without a Limb is Limitless.

“Our players exemplify dedication, determination and the will to live life to its fullest,” Van Sleet said. “They love our team’s mission of inspiring and educating people. We could play 52 weeks per year based on the number of requests we get. We’ve played close to 300 games in 33 states over the past four years, and that gets expensive.”

1,000 limited-edition Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team Super Z bats will be sold to help with those expenses. The bat retails for $329.99, and a portion of proceeds will go to support the WWAST.

“It’s great that our team will make money from the sale of this special bat, which will help us cover some of our costs,” Van Sleet said. “But it’s even better that we’re able to swing the best softball bat on the market and that bat has the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team’s  name on it.”

To learn more about the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team or request an appearance, visit www.woundedwarrioramputeesoftballteam.org.

The Slugger Super Z that serves as the model for the WWAST special-edition bat is already taking softball fields by storm. The buzz about Super Z performance started when Slugger seeded the market with bats. Now players everywhere are asking for it.

SBSZ16A-E 300dpi

The bat has 100-percent-composite, two-piece construction with exclusive Slugger iST Xs Technology to provide an extra-stiff connection between the barrel and handle, allowing for less handle flex and more barrel flex. The result is a massive sweet spot and maximum trampoline off the barrel, providing pop to launch home runs and crush line drives. Or – as Slugger says in social media – to make #BallGoFar.

The Slugger Super Z is available in USSSA balanced and end load models as well as ASA balanced and end load models with 12-inch barrels and grit-blast finish. All USSSA and ASA versions are available in 26, 27 and 28 ounces. The Slugger Super Z retails for $299.99.

To learn more about the Super Z, visit slugger.com.

About Slugger

Founded in 1884, Slugger is the Official Bat and Equipment Bag of Major League Baseball®. This iconic baseball brand is part of Chicago-based Wilson Sporting Goods Co., the largest baseball and softball equipment provider in the world today. In the sports of baseball and softball, Wilson manufactures high-performance gloves, bats, uniforms, apparel, protective gear, accessories and player-development equipment through its Wilson, DeMarini, Slugger and ATEC brands. The company uses player insights to develop products that push equipment innovation into new territories and empower athletes at every level to perform at their best. Wilson is a subsidiary of Amer Sports Corporation.

Night with the Pharoah on Saturday At Churchill Downs Thursday, Jun 11 2015 

American Pharaoh, Firing Line and Dortmund lead the field into the turn for home. Paula Presley photo

TRIPLE CROWN HERO AMERICAN PHAROAH TO PARADE AT CHURCHILL DOWNS BEFORE FANS AT SATURDAY NIGHT’S “DOWNS AFTER DARK”

Thrilling Racing Meets Nightlife Event to Feature Stephen Foster Handicap and Possible Spot in $5 Million Breeders’ Cup Classic

Kentucky Derby 141 contender American Pharoah worked out at Churchill Downs on April 29, 2015

American Pharoah worked out at Churchill Downs on April 29, 2015. Photo by Bill Brymer.

The best party in town this Saturday night just got a lot better. Fans will be able to cheer Triple Crown winner American Pharoah in person as he parades on the track and in the Paddock at “Downs After Dark” presented by Stella Artois and Finlandia Vodka. The evening also will highlight the annual Kentucky Derby Trophy presentation to American Pharoah’s winning jockey Victor Espinoza, Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert and owner and breeder Amhed Zayat.

In addition to celebrating American Pharoah’s historic win, guests will enjoy a nightclub atmosphere, live music by The Pass, silk aerialist performances, specialty cocktails and 11 live races, including four stakes races. Bet or No Bet presented by Thorntons will give one lucky fan the chance to wager $4,000 to win on the horse of their choice. The evening’s theme is “White Party” so guests are encouraged to wear their best summer whites.

 

The night’s racing will feature two exciting Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series Win & You’re In™ stakes to earn starting spots in the 2015 Breeders’ Cup World Championships in October at Keeneland. The winner of the $500,000 Stephen Foster Handicap Presented by GE (Grade I), one of the most important races for older horses, will earn a spot in the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) and the winner of the $200,000 Fleur de Lis Handicap Presented by Thorntons (GII) will earn a spot in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI). Saturday’s stakes races also include the $100,000 Matt Winn (GIII) and the $100,000 Regret (GIII).

Tickets are still available for the new Courtyard, where fans 21 and over can see the action up close along the track’s homestretch.

WHEN:    Saturday Night, June 13

  • Gates open at 5 p.m., first race at 6 p.m., last race at 11:10 p.m. and on-track party continues until midnight
  • American Pharoah paraded after Race 5 at approximately 8:10 p.m. * subject to change
  • Engraved Kentucky Derby Trophy presentation after Race 6 around 8:30 p.m. * subject to change
  • Live Music by The Pass in the Plaza begins at 7:50 p.m.
  • Silk Aerialist performances take place in the Aristides Garden before Races 2-7
  • “Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In” airs on NBCSN from 8-10 p.m.
  • Horse Racing Radio Network (HRRN) coverage airs on Sirius channel 92 from 8-10 p.m.

 

Louisville City FC Brings On Chicago Fire’s Collin Fernandez Wednesday, Jun 10 2015 

louisville fc soccer

Louisville, KY (June 9, 2015) — City FC announced today that 18-year-old midfielder Collin Fernandez has joined the club on-loan from Major League Soccer’s Chicago Fire. Fernandez, a current member of the U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team player pool, was also named to the roster for the U-14 Boy’s National Team trip to Mexico in 2011 and spent 2013 at the U.S. U-17 Residency Program in Bradenton, Florida while moving through the Fire Academy ranks.

Chicago-Fire.com

Chicago-Fire.com

“Collin is a very young talented player who also has national team experience,” head coach, James O’Connor said. “We feel he will be a good addition to our squad and we look forward to playing a part in his development.”

Fernandez signed to the Chicago Fire last August as a Homegrown Player after spending several seasons in the Fire’s youth academy. He made four appearances with the Fire Reserve team in 2014, including three as a professional.

During the 2013-14 season, Fernandez began to really standout in the US Soccer Development Academy. The 5’8″ midfielder scored 16 goals in 25 matches while playing up an age group with the U-18 Chicago Fire. The Downers-Grove, Illinois native was named Central Conference U-16 Player of the Year while with the academy.

In 2014, Fernandez helped the U.S. U-18 National Team win the 21st International Tournament of Václav Ježek in the Czech Republic, by scoring a goal and dishing out a pair of assists in the three tournament matches.

After spending his two weeks on trial, Fernandez is now available to play for City FC starting tomorrow versus FC Montreal.

City will return home on June 20th to face another MLS 2 team in the form of the New York Red Bulls 2. Fans can purchase tickets by visiting louisvillecityfc.com/tickets.

Louisville’s Kentucky Derby Museum Has Made Some Changes for New Triple Crown Winner American Pharoah Wednesday, Jun 10 2015 

Derby Museum American Pharoah

Louisville, KY (June 6, 2015) – Several changes recognizing the historical achievement of American Pharoah as Thoroughbred racing’s 12th Triple Crown Champion will be unveiled at the Kentucky Derby Museum. Multiple banners and displays congratulating the most recent Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes victor are now for public consumption, including one located on the exterior of the Museum’s main entrance.

American Pharoah is a special, special horse, and has cemented himself as a legend in Thoroughbred racing,” Museum President Lynn Ashton said. “We’re thrilled to recognize his achievements to all of our guests and share in the celebration of our latest Triple Crown Champion.”

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.21.15 PM

Today is the last day to sign congratulations cards to American Pharoah and his team (facebook.com/derbymuseum)

 

The public is invited to formally send their congratulations to the American Pharoah team by signing large cards that will be shipped to owner/breeder Ahmed Zayat, trainer Bob Baffert and jockey Victor Espinoza. The card will be available inside the Museum’s lobby Tuesday, June 9 and Wednesday, June 10 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Video of American Pharoah’s race is also available in the Warner L. Jones, Jr. Time Machine, joining Secretariat, Seattle Slew, Affirmed, War Admiral and others in the elite Triple Crown category. The case on display formerly home to the Triple Crown Trophy has been updated, congratulating American Pharoah on his unique accomplishment.

Other changes in the works include the addition of an American Pharoah Kiosk alongside fellow Triple Crown Champions on the first floor, a banner representing American Pharoah’s silks hung in the center of the Great Hall and video of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes running in a loop in the Capture the Moment exhibit inside the lobby. In addition, all artifacts on display related to any Triple Crown Champion will receive a special label commemorating the achievement.

Thoroughbred racing fans waited 37 years for its next hero and got it in 2015 as American Pharoah became the 12th Triple Crown Champion. Three generations of people were either very young or not even born when Affirmed became the last Triple Crown Champion in 1978. To add perspective, there is the same amount of Triple Crown Champions as men who have walked on the moon. Congratulations to the American Pharoah team for providing a truly historic moment that will resonate for generations.

derbymuseum.org

derbymuseum.org

Louisville Bats Begin Seven-Game Homestand Wednesday, Jun 10 2015 

louisville bats

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Devin Mesoraco bobbleheads will be given to the first 3,000 paid admissions to the Louisville Bats game versus the Durham Bulls at Slugger Field on Saturday, June 13. Gates open at 5 p.m. and first pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. The Bats will also host their second and final Dog Day at the Park on Tuesday, June 16 to benefit the Kentucky Humane Society.

The Bats’ seven-game homestand opens against the Bulls on Thursday, June 11 as the club hosts another locally famous $1 Budweiser beer happy hour from 5:30-7 p.m., featuring live music by Kimmet & Doug on the Overlook Deck from 5:30-6:25 p.m. Fans may also bring a new children’s book to the gate to receive a voucher for a free hot dog and small Pepsi as a part of the UPS Store Toys for Tots Literacy Night. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. and first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

The Chicago Boyz Acrobatic Team will perform following Friday night’s game. The group, whose act was featured on the eighth season of America’s Got Talent in 2013, will be followed by Friday Fireworks. Saturday’s game will feature in-game performances by Bucket Ruckus in addition to the bobblehead giveaway.

Sidewalk Prophets will perform at the Bats’ annual Faith Day concert at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday in the Hall of Fame Pavilion at Slugger Field. Tickets to the concert and game are sold separately. To celebrate Flag Day, American flags will be handed out to the first 2,000 fans and Brigadier General Steven P. Bullard, chief of staff for the Kentucky Air National Guard headquarters, will throw out the first pitch. Also Sunday, there will be the Inflatable KidsZone, Kids Eat Free during the game and postgame Kids Run the Bases.

The Gwinnett Braves then visit Slugger Field for three games beginning Monday, June 15 and Dog Day will be on Tuesday. Tickets for dogs are $3 with proceeds being donated to the Kentucky Humane Society. Canines and their owners should enter through the gates on Witherspoon Street or Jackson Street.

The Bats finish their current three game series with the Columbus Clippers tonight at Huntington Park. The Bats won in comeback fashion against their rivals last night, scoring three runs in the 9thinning to tie the game at 4-4 and three runs in the 11th inning to win 7-4. (31-28) is currently in second place and 5.5 games behind the Indianapolis Indians in the International League West. After four Bats were promoted to Cincinnati in the past week, there are currently six players playing for the Reds who were on the Bats’ Opening Night roster.

The Bats have averaged 8,912 fans per game at Slugger Field since its opening in 2000 and have totaled over 9.4 million fans through 15 seasons. Tickets for all regular season gamesare available. The entire 2015 Bats schedule, including updated promotions and special events, can be found at batsbaseball.com. Single-game tickets may be purchased online, by calling 1-855-228-8497 or by visiting the Slugger Field box office. Full and partial season tickets, along with group outings and suite rentals are available by calling the Bats front office at 502-212-2287.

Bats Homestand Highlights • June 11-17, 2015

 

Thursday, June 11 – Bats vs. Durham Bulls, 7:05 p.m.

·         Budweiser Beer Happy Hour: $1 Bud and Bud Light from 5:30-7 p.m. plus live music by Kimmet & Doug on the Overlook Deck from 5:30-6:25 p.m.

·         UPS Store Toys for Tots Literacy Night: Fans may bring a new children’s book to the gates and receive a voucher for a free regular hot dog and small Pepsi.

·         Bellarmine Alumni Night.

 

Friday, June 12 – Bats vs. Durham Bulls, 7:05 p.m.

·         Southern Indiana Night, presented by Lucas Oil.

·         Postgame performance by the Chicago Boyz Acrobatic Team, presented by Southern Indiana News & Tribune.

·         Friday Fireworks.

 

Saturday, June 13 – Bats vs. Durham Bulls, 6:05 p.m.

·         Devin Mesoraco Bobblehead Giveaway: First 3,000 paid admissions, presented by Pepsi.

·         Appearance by Bucket Ruckus, presented by Lowe’s.

·         Baseball Across the Region: A travelling baseball will visit Slugger Field on its journey through Reds Country to the Major League Baseball All-Star Game in Cincinnati. A pregame ceremony will feature the Cincinnati USA Chamber of Commerce.

·         Backyard Bash: Cornhole on the Overlook until 7:30; $3 14 oz. AmberBock, LandShark and Shock Top at the Overlook Grill until the end of the 7th inning; adult fans may register to win two (2) 2015 World Series tickets (winner to be drawn September 5), presented by Budweiser.

 

Sunday, June 14 – Bats vs. Durham Bulls, 6:05 p.m.

·         Faith Day: Pregame concert by Sidewalk Prophets at 3:30 p.m. in the Hall of Fame Pavilion. Game and concert tickets sold separately.

·         Flag Day: American flag giveaway to first 2,000 fans. Ceremonial first pitch by Brigadier General Steven P. Bullard, chief of staff for Headquarters, Kentucky Air National Guard.

·         Inflatable KidsZone: Inflated from 5-8 p.m. on the Overlook Deck, presented by BracesBracesBraces and Kids Dentistree.

·         Kids Eat Free: New for 2015 at every Sunday home game, all kids 12-and-under with paid admission receive a free hot dog, junior nachos and small soda. One meal per child.

·         Postgame Kids Run the Base, presented by the YMCA and Meijer.

 

Monday, June 15 – Bats vs. Gwinnett Braves, 7:05 p.m.

·         Margarita Monday: 12 oz. margaritas available for $3 behind Section 122 on the third-base side.

·         Meijer Monday: Fans receive $3 off per field reserved seat when presenting any Meijer receipt to the box office window.

·         Baseball Bingo: Winner receives a $50 Meijer gift card.

·         White Castle Guarantee Win Monday: If the Bats win, fans can take their ticket stub to White Castle for a FREE classic slider (good either Monday night or all day Tuesday at area White Castles).

 

Tuesday, June 16 – Bats vs. Gwinnett Braves, 7:05 p.m.

·         Dog Day at the Park: $8 admission for dog owners and $3 admission per dog. Dog admissions will be donated to the Kentucky Humane Society. Enter through Witherspoon Street or Jackson Street entrances.

·         $1 Hot Dogs and Pepsi Products, presented by Pepsi, Meijer and Aunt Millie’s.

 

Wednesday, June 17 – Bats vs. Gwinnett Braves, 11:45 a.m.

·         Kids Summer Camp and Day Care Day.

Pitino Signs Deal to Stay at U of L Through 2026 Tuesday, Jun 9 2015 

A lot more Pitino press conferences in the future

Louisville Extends Rick Pitino’s Contract Through 2025-26

Hall of Fame coach has guided the Cardinals to the NCAA Elite Eight in five of the last eight years

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The University of has extended the contract of men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino four years, boosting his association with the Cardinals through the 2025-26 season.

Rick Pitino

Rick Pitino

The first coach in NCAA history to win a national title at two different schools and the first to take three different teams to the Final Four, Pitino had seven years remaining on his current contract, which had tied him with the Cardinals through the 2021-22 season.

In 30 seasons as a collegiate head coach at five different schools, Pitino has compiled a 722-254 record, a .740 winning percentage that ranks him 11th among active coaches. He has a 368-126 record in 14 seasons at UofL, the third winningest coach in Cardinal history. UofL is among the nations’ top 10 programs in winning percentage under his guidance.

“Continuity is a huge part of the success in our athletic department,” said UofL Vice President/Director of Athletics Tom Jurich.  “When we get great people, we want to keep them.  Age is just a number.  He has more passion now than at any time in his career, his players truly love him and he has been so important to our community and university.  We couldn’t be more proud to have him as our coach.”

Pitino was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013, lofty recognition for a lifetime of impressive basketball achievement.  His up-tempo style, pressure defense, strong work ethic and family atmosphere have restored the Cardinals to national prominence where it is firmly seated.

His most recent Cardinals reached the Elite Eight in the NCAA Tournament appearance for the fifth time in the last eight years and played their first season in the Atlantic Coast Conference, finishing fourth among a league with five teams in the nation’s top 25, including NCAA Champion Duke.  He won his 700th game along the way.

Pitino guided the Cardinals to the 2013 NCAA Championship after claiming the nation’s top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament and winning the BIG EAST Conference regular season co-championship and tournament titles.  The Cardinals won a school-record 35 games while claiming their first NCAA title in 27 years.  UofL reached its second straight and10th Final Four, marking Pitino’s seventh, a total reached by only six coaches all-time.

A 2006 inductee to the New York City Hall of Fame, Pitino has the second-highest winning percentage in NCAA Tournament games among active coaches, winning 74.6 percent of his games in the post-season event with a 53-18 record in 20 tournament appearances.

Pitino’s impact on the U of L program has gone well beyond his on-court success. The overall grade point average of the men’s basketball team in recent years has set record figures and the Cardinals received an NCAA Public Recognition Award in the latest Academic Progress Rate with a perfect score.  The Cardinals earned a collective 3.26 grade point average for the 2014-15 academic year and the team has produced around a 3.0 or better GPA for 14 consecutive semesters.  placed a league-high seven individuals on the 21-member 2015 ACC All-Academic Team.

For three and a half years, Pitino served as president and head coach of the NBA’s Boston Celtics. With the Celtics, he took over a team that had posted a franchise worst 15-67 record before his arrival. He quickly made an impact, improving the Celtics’ victory total by 21 games in his first season. He resigned his position with the storied franchise on Jan. 8, 2001 after compiling a 102-146 record there.

He guided Kentucky to three NCAA Final Four appearances in his last five years at Kentucky, winning the 1996 NCAA Championship and reaching the national title game in 1997. In eight seasons with the Wildcats, he amassed a 219-50 record (.814) while winning two league crowns and an impressive 17-1 record in the Southeastern Conference Tournament.

Pitino, 62, got his start in coaching as a graduate assistant at Hawai’i in 1974 and served as a full-time assistant there in 1975-76 when he was the head coach for the last six games of the season (2-4) when the head coach was relieved of his duties.  He served two seasons as an assistant at Syracuse under Jim Boeheim from 1976-78.

Pitino was only 25 years old when he accepted his first head coaching job at Boston University in 1978. He produced a 91-51 record in five years there, departing as the most successful coach in BU history. In his final season there, he guided the Terriers to their first NCAA Tournament appearance in 24 years. He was twice named New England Coach of the Year (1979, 1983).

Pitino left Boston U. to become an assistant coach for the New York Knicks from 1983-85, where he worked with head coach Hubie Brown. It was a team he would return to lead as its head coach in two seasons.

He was head coach at Providence College for two seasons (1985-87), producing a 42-23 record there. He guided the Friars to an NCAA Tournament appearance in 1986 and an improbable trip to the NCAA Final Four in 1987, winning the regional title in Freedom Hall.

Before his stint at Kentucky, Pitino served as head coach of the New York Knicks for two seasons. In his initial year there in 1987-88, the Knicks improved by 14 victories and made the NBA Playoffs for the first time in four seasons. The Knicks won 52 games in 1988-89 and swept the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

Aside from his hoops prowess, Pitino has achieved success off the court as well in such realms as broadcasting, publishing, motivational speaking and horse racing. He is an accomplished author, producing such books as the best sellers “Success Is A Choice” and “Lead to Succeed,” as well as his latest offering “The One-Day Contract.”

He earned his degree in 1974 at Massachusetts, where he was a standout guard for the Minutemen’s basketball team. His 329 career assists rank eighth all-time at UMass and his 168 assists as a senior is the sixth-best single season total ever there. Pitino was a freshman during NBA legend Julius Erving’s senior year.

Born Sept. 18, 1952, Pitino is a native of New York City where he was a standout guard for Dominic High School in Oyster Bay, Long Island. There, he captained his team and established several school scoring marks.

Pitino and his wife Joanne have five children — Michael, Christopher, Richard, Ryan and Jacqueline — and six grandchildren — Anna, Audrey, Alex  (Michael and wife Bethany’s children), Andrew, James (Christopher and wife Brucie’s children), and Ava (Richard and wife Jill’s child).

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