The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, dropped a pitcher' duel on Friday night, 4-2, to the Rochester Red Wings. P.J. Walters picked up the win for Rochester, while Ryan Perry took the hard-luck loss for Syracuse.
The game was scoreless until the fifth inning when Rochester (8-14) struck first. Joe Benson got a hold of a Perry pitch and drove it over the center-field wall to put the Red Wings on the board. It was Benson's first long ball of the season. Doug Bernier followed with a walk and Eric Farris doubled to left, advancing Bernier to third. The next batter was Chris Herrmann, who singled to left to score Bernier and give the Red Wings a 2-0 lead.
Walters, meanwhile, was cruising through six innings and shut Syracuse (8-13) down until the bottom of the seventh. Will Rhymes started the inning with a walk and Micah Owings advanced him to third on a single to center field. After a Jimmy Van Ostrand walk, up came Zach Walters. The shortstop hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Rhymes and cut the Chiefs cut the deficit to 2-1.
It didn't take long for Rochester to get the run back. Fernando Abad replaced Perry to begin the top of the eighth. Herrmann led off the frame with an infield single on a slow dribbler up the first-base line. Abad came back and struck out the next batter, Jeff Clement, but Chris Colabello followed up with a double to left that scored Hermann. Colabello was tagged out trying to stretch the play into a triple, but gave the Red Wings a 3-1 lead.
In the top of the ninth, Rochester extended its lead. With one out, Benson followed with a triple to center off reliever Erik Davis. A few pitches later, Benson scored on the passed ball to put the Red Wings up 4-1.
The Chiefs threatened in the bottom of the frame. With one out in the inning, Van Ostrand singled to center field. Zach Walters followed with a double to left, advancing Van Ostrand to third base with one out. Bobby Lanigan replaced Michael O'Connor and induced a fly ball by Carlos Rivero to score Van Ostrand and make it 4-2. The comeback would stop there, though, as Costanzo struck out to end the game.
Syracuse continues its homestand Saturday when it opens a four-game set against Durham at 7:00. The Chiefs send left-hander Danny Rosenbaum to the mound against Alex Colome for the Bulls.