August 7, 2017 - International League (IL) - Syracuse Chiefs
The Syracuse Chiefs dropped the final game of a four-game set to the Rochester Red Wings, 8-4, on Sunday afternoon at NBT Bank Stadium. Brandon Snyder powered the offense for Syracuse crushing his 14th home run of the season in the bottom of the third inning. Meanwhile, for Rochester, a four-run eighth inning led the Red Wings to a series split with the Chiefs.
Rochester (65-49) opened the scoring immediately in the first inning against Esmil Rogers. Zack Granite, the Red Wings' leadoff batter, hit his fourth home run of the season on just the fourth pitch of the afternoon over the right-field fence to lead off the game. Two batters later, Daniel Palka singled into right field. In the next at-bat, Kennys Vargas slapped a ground ball off the leg of Rogers on the mound. The ball careened into right field for a base hit and allowed Palka to move up to third on the play. Matt Hague followed by grounding into a 6-4 fielders' choice, plating Palka and putting the Red Wings out in front 2-0.
Vargas added to the Rochester lead with one swing of the bat in the third. With the first two batters retired, the switch-hitting first baseman pumped his eighth home run of the season over the center-field fence for a 3-0 Red Wings' lead.
Syracuse (44-69) tied the game up in the bottom half of the third versus Aaron Slegers. After a Zach Collier walk to start the inning, Irving Falu slapped a ground ball to the right side of the infield. Collier attempted to evade the oncoming liner, but could not get out of the way as the ball hit off his back foot. Collier was called out on the hit by batted ball, putting Falu alone on the base paths at first. Neftali Soto followed with a line-drive single into right field to put runners at first and second base for Snyder. The left fielder proceeded to clear the bases on a three-run, line-drive home run over the left-field fence, knotting the game up at 3-3.
The Chiefs then took the lead in the fourth. With one out, Bengie Gonzalez singled into right field. In the next at-bat, with Collier at the plate, Gonzalez faked a steal toward second base. The Rochester catcher, Anthony Recker, bit on the fake and threw down to second base. His throw got away into center field, allowing Gonzalez to take the base anyway on the throwing error. Later in the at-bat, Collier flied out to right field which moved Gonzalez up to third. One batter later, Slegers tossed a wild pitch to Falu, scoring Gonzalez and giving the Chiefs a 4-3 lead.
The game continued to go back and forth with Rochester tying in the top of the seventh. Neal Cotts came in to the game to replace Rogers on the mound and Engelb Vielma immediately welcomed him with a single into right field. Granite then laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Vielma to second. In the next at-bat, with J.B. Shuck at the plate, a pitch from Cotts bounced off the glove of Spencer Kieboom behind the plate, advancing Vielma to third on the passed ball. The Venezuelan-born shortstop then scored in the same at-bat on a Shuck sacrifice fly into center field, tying the game at 4-4.
A four-run eighth inning gave Rochester the lead late in the game. Vargas led of the frame with a single off the glove of a diving Gonzalez at shortstop. After a Hague walk, Niko Goodrum came on as a pinch-runner for Vargas at second. Two batters later, Tommy Field induced a walk from Cotts to load the bases. Cotts was then lifted in favor of Neil Ramirez who took over with the bases loaded and only one-man out. The first batter Ramirez faced, Recker, singled into right-center field, bringing home both Goodrum and Hague to score for an 8-4 lead. Field moved up to third on the play and then scored on a Vielma sacrifice fly to center field. Following a Granite walk, Shuck shot a line-drive double into right-center field to score Recker and extend the Rochester lead to 8-4. Ramirez got out of the inning in the next at-bat, striking out Palka to end the frame, stranding runners at second and third.
The Chiefs hit the road for an eight-game, seven-day road trip starting at 5:05 Monday night in Toledo. A doubleheader with the Mud Hens starts with game one serving as the makeup of a postponed game originally scheduled to be played in Syracuse in April. Right-hander John Simms is scheduled to take the mound for the Chiefs in game one with the game two starter yet to be announced. Neither starter has been announced for Toledo.