The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, beat the Louisville Bats, 7-2, on Saturday night from NBT Bank Stadium. Josh Johnson collected two hits and knocked in two runs for the Chiefs en route to the win.
Louisville (59-62) started the scoring off in the first inning against Syracuse right-hander Blake Treinen. Jason Bourgeois led off the game with a single to right field. After a Ruben Gotay pop out, Felix Perez doubled to left field, and Bourgeois scored for a 1-0 Bats lead. Neftali Soto then struck out for the second out of the inning, but Bryan Anderson singled to right field, scoring Perez and extending the Louisville lead to two.
Syracuse (67-52) responded with a run in the bottom of the first inning off Louisville right-hander Josh Smith. Emmanuel Burriss led off with a base hit to center field. As Will Rhymes struck out swinging, Burriss stole second base. Brandon Laird then doubled to center field to score Burris to cut the Bats' lead to one, 2-1.
The Chiefs added to their lead in the bottom of the fourth inning against Smith. Right fielder Eury Perez led the inning off with a walk and stole second three pitches later. After a Sandy Leon flyout, center fielder Jeff Kobernus walked to put two on for Josh Johnson. The left fielder singled to right field to score Perez to tie the game. Two batters later, shortstop Emmanuel Burriss singled to right field to score Kobernus and give the Chiefs their first lead of the game.
Syracuse tacked onto its lead in the bottom of the fifth inning against Smith. Laird singled to lead off the inning. A Tyler Moore groundout moved Laird to second. Laird advanced to third on a Perez base hit to left field. The single ended Smith's night as Nick Christiani came on in relief. With Leon batting, Perez stole second base. Leon then worked a walk as a Christiani wild pitch allowed Perez to move to third and Laird to score for a 4-2 Chiefs lead. With runners on the corners and one out, Kobernus reached on an infield single, moving Leon to second and scoring Perez for a three-run Syracuse advantage. Johnson followed with another infield single to score Leon and extend the Chiefs' lead to four. With Kobernus on third and Johnson on first, pinch-hitter Greg Dobbs singled to right field, scoring Kobernus to complete a four-run inning and give Syracuse a 7-2 lead.
The Chiefs are in action Sunday afternoon as they complete their four-game series with the Bats at 1:05 p.m. Right-hander A.J. Cole is on the mound for Syracuse and left-hander Scott Diamond takes the rubber for Louisville.