The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, beat the Buffalo Bisons, 5-0, on a gorgeous Fourth of July night at Alliance Bank Stadium. Syracuse starter Zach Duke threw six-plus scoreless innings, while right fielder Brett Carroll drove in two runs during a three-run eighth inning.
Syracuse (44-42) started the scoring in the second inning against Buffalo starter Matt Harvey. Carroll led off with a walk and moved to third base after Carlos Rivero singled down the left-field line. Jesus Valdez, who was called up to the Chiefs from Double-A Harrisburg earlier in the day, put his new team up 1-0 with a sacrifice fly to right.
One run proved to be enough support for the International League All-Star Duke and the Chiefs' bullpen. Duke retired 11 batters before Fred Lewis got the Bisons' first hit on a bunt single in the fourth inning. Buffalo managed to have only one runner reach third base all night.
Meanwhile, Duke received some added run support in the home sixth. Jim Negrych knocked a solo home run - his sixth of the season - to give the Chiefs a 2-0 lead. The second baseman, who also singled in the game, is now 24 of his last 49 (.490).
Duke exited the contest in the seventh after allowing a leadoff single to Adam Loewen and walking Rob Johnson. Pat Lehman came on to relieve the left-hander and proceeded to retire the only three batters he faced.
The Chiefs offense then provided some fireworks in the eighth inning. Corey Brown singled to begin the frame and reached third when Jarrett Hoffpauir hit a ground-rule double. Negrych then walked to load the bases. With one out, Carroll doubled to left field to score both Brown and Hoffpauir. Carlos Rivero then followed with a sacrifice fly and Syracuse led 5-0.
Christian Garcia threw a scoreless eighth and ninth inning for the Chiefs, who snapped a four-game losing streak.
The Chiefs and Bisons meet in the middle game of a three-game set Thursday night at Alliance Bank Stadium at 7:00. Right-hander Mitch Atkins is slated to start for Syracuse.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.