South Atlantic League
What: Three-game series
When: Thursday through Saturday (7:05 each night)
Where: Whitaker Bank Ballpark
Tickets: Call (859) 422-7867
Major League affiliates: Houston Astros (Legends), Texas Rangers
Probable pitchers (Legends listed first): Thursday, RH Mike Foltynewicz (2-6, 5.09) vs. RH Roman Mendez (5-1, 3.59); Friday, RH Ruben Alaniz (3-4, 5.72) vs. RH Matt Thompson (2-3, 3.67); Saturday, RH Tanner Bushue (6-1, 3.22) vs. Luke Jackson (0-1, 4.11).
Crawdad to watch: RF Josh Richmond (6-foot-3, 215 pounds, from Cincinnati) is one of two Louisville Cardinals on the Hickory roster (with 1B Andrew Clark). Clark has hits in five of his last six games. Overall, he is batting .254 with five homers, 23 RBI and 36 runs scored. He also has 18 doubles and a triple among his 49 hits, and has stolen four bases in five attempts. Richmond has a .351 on-base percentage, slugging .435. A 12th round draft pick last year, he played 35 games for the Spokane Indians of the Northwest League last summer, batting .297 with three homers, 19 RBI and 23 runs. Baseball America rated him as the 29th-best prospect in the Rangers system coming into this season. In three years at U of L, Richmond hit .291with 14 homers, 77 RBI and 117 runs. His college play was limited when he was hit by a pitch on his left hand in 2009, which led to surgery the next winter. He reinjured the hand last year, causing him to miss 41 college games.
Legend to watch: Saturday’s starter, RHP Tanner Bushue (6-4, 207, from Kinmundy, Ill.) leads the Legends in wins and leads starters in ERA. At 6-1 with a 3.22 ERA, Bushue has struck out 34 and walked 12 over 10 starts and 50 1/3 innings. He has pitched shutout ball in two of his last three starts, yielding two runs in the other game. Coming into the season, Baseball America rated him the No. 8 prospect in the Astros system. He was a second-round pick in the 2009 draft, out of South Central (Ill.) High School, where he also played basketball. He joined the Gulf Coast League Astros in 2009, going 1-0 with a 2.42 ERA over five starts, with 19 strikeouts and five walks over 22 1/3 innings. This is his second season with the Legends. Last year, he was the opening day starter. He led the team in innings pitched (133 2/2) but also led the league in homers allowed (18). Over 25 starts, he went 7-8 with a 4.11 ERA, 114 strikeouts and 48 walks. He missed two weeks of action due to a toe injury that required post-season surgery.
Promotions: Thirsty Thursday ($1 drinks) also marks the second and final ”Bark in the Park” game. Fans may bring their dogs to the game, provided they are leashed and behaved, for a minimum $1 donation to the Lexington Humane Society. … Friday is Military Appreciation Night in honor of those who are serving or who have served in the military. The Legends also will recognize their single-season and career leader in home runs, Brian Pellegrini, who hit 27 of his 48 career homers in 2009. Pellegrini will be on hand, and the first 1,000 fans to enter (gates open at 6 p.m.) will receive a Pellegrini bobblehead. … Saturday is NASCAR Night, with fans receiving a free car magnet. Fireworks will follow the game. … Also, a free youth baseball clinic is scheduled Saturday, 8 a.m.-noon. For details, visit www.lexingtonlegends.com or www.chevyyouthsports.com.
Radio: WLXG AM-1300