The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, scored six third-inning runs in a 9-2 win over the Rochester Red Wings on Sunday night from Frontier Field. Jesus Valdez's grand slam broke open the scoring in the third in a game the Chiefs never trailed. Lefthander Ross Detwiler allowed just one earned run in five innings for his sixth victory of the season.
Syracuse (31-43) wore down Rochester (30-44) starter Thomas Diamond early. The righthander took 24 pitches to get through the first inning, with the Chiefs scoring first thanks to a Matt Antonelli triple and Valdez RBI groundout. Diamond would throw another 22 pitches in the second inning before Syracuse exploded in the third frame.
The Chiefs got started when Gregor Blanco doubled to lead off the third and Steve Lombardozzi singled. After Antonelli worked one of his three walks of the night, Valdez launched a 3-2 pitch to deep left field. Left fielder Dustin Martin leaped at the wall to attempt a spectacular catch, but the ball bounced off his glove and over the fence for the Chiefs' third grand slam of the season. Valdez drove in five runs on the night and scored two runs. Syracuse tacked on two more scores in the inning with a Jesus Flores RBI single and a throwing error two batters later by Rochester third baseman Chase Lambin.
Rochester scored single runs in the third and fourth innings courtesy of a Brandon Roberts RBI double and Lambin sacrifice fly. The Chiefs would score two more runs courtesy of Flores. The starting catcher drove in a run with a sac fly in the fourth and clobbered a solo home run in the seventh to plate the ninth and final run.
The Chiefs and Red Wings play the last of four consecutive games between the teams Monday night at 7:05. Lefthanders Tommy Milone and Scott Diamond will duel for the Chiefs and Red Wings, respectively.