Louisville Bats @ Louisville Slugger Field

April 7-Sept. 5

Louisville Slugger Field • 212-2287
$7-$11; 6:35 p.m. (opening night)

The Louisville Bats don’t just dust off home plate for the start of another season. Every wall is painted, all the seats and fixtures are spic and span, and even the concrete floor at Louisville Slugger Field — now 11 years old — has a kind of polished patina. The natural-grass playing field is springtime green. Meanwhile, Bats manager Rick Sweet has been in Arizona for spring training with the parent Cincinnati Reds club, crafting a final roster for opening night. The Bats’ pitching has been strong in recent years, but they may need to rely more on hitting this year. Both the Bats and Reds won divisional championships in their leagues last season. Louisville opens International League play Thursday with a six-game home stand against Toledo and Columbus. Most first-pitch times in April are 6:35 p.m., moving to 7:05 in May. —Bill Doolittle

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