Knights drop Friday’s home opener to Redbirds, 9-1
Press release provided by the Charlotte Knights
(UPTOWN CHARLOTTE) -- The Charlotte Knights dropped the opening game of the 2023 season against the Memphis Redbirds by a score of 9-1 in front of a sell-out crowd of 10,366 fans at Truist Field on Friday night. Charlotte catcher Carlos Pérez launched a solo home run in the bottom of the ninth inning to end the Memphis shutout.
Charlotte LHP Nate Fisher (1-0, 9.00) was saddled with the loss despite a solid effort in his Charlotte debut. Fisher, 26, struck-out eight batters over four innings of work. He allowed a solo home run in the top of the second inning to Luken Baker, which put the Redbirds on the scoreboard first, 1-0. Two innings later, Baker started the offensive scoring with a two-run double. Memphis center fielder Oscar Mercado added a two-run double in the inning to give the Redbirds a 4-0 lead at that point.
The Redbirds added five runs in the top of the ninth inning to push the lead to 9-0. Baker led the Memphis offense on the night with three hits and three RBIs.
Memphis LHP Matthew Liberatore (1-0, 0.00) earned the win after he allowed just four hits over five shutout innings. Liberatore fanned seven batters and walked just two. In all, Memphis pitching allowed just seven hits on the evening.
Pérez, who hit a season-high 21 home runs last season with the Knights, paced the Charlotte offense with two hits and the home run. Additionally, left fielder Adam Haseley and second baseman Lenyn Sosa added two hits apiece for the Knights in the Opening Knight contest.
The two teams will continue the three-game series from Truist Field on Saturday night with first pitch set for 7:04 p.m. RHP Jesse Scholtens will make his Charlotte Knights debut on Saturday against RHP Dakota Hudson for the Redbirds.
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