The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, fell 4-1 to the Lehigh Valley IronPigs on Monday night at Alliance Bank Stadium. After the Chiefs took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, the IronPigs struck for four runs in the sixth to account for the night's scoring.
Syracuse (31-34) loaded the bases in the first inning courtesy of a Corey Brown walk and singles from Erik Komatsu and Mark Teahen. Brown scored when Lehigh Valley starter Tyler Cloyd caused Xavier Paul to ground into a double play to shortstop.
The Chiefs' 1-0 lead carried all the way into the sixth inning, as Syracuse starter Yunesky Maya was cruising. The right-hander allowed only one hit and no walks, while striking out a pair through the first five frames. In the top of the sixth, however, Lehigh Valley's Michael Spidale led off with a bunt single that Maya attempted to field but injured himself in doing. Maya became the second Chief forced to leave the game with an injury.
Earlier, in the top of the fourth inning, Maya's battery mate James Skelton had to exit after an inning-ending play in which 'Pig Kyle Hudson collided with the catcher in an effort to score.
Syracuse sent Jeff Mandel on in relief, but the righty ran into trouble, giving up a hit toTug Hulett, followed by run-scoring singles for Cloyd and Hudson. That put the IronPigs up 2-1. Domonic Brown later added a run-scoring, one-out double to right-center field and Erik Kratz capped the inning with a sacrifice fly to give the road team a 4-1 advantage.
Mandel came back to throw a scoreless seventh for the Chiefs, and Atahualpa Severino and Christian Garcia followed suit out of the bullpen in the eighth and ninth, respectively. Offensively, though, Syracuse couldn't muster a rally. The Chiefs left a man on base in six of the first seven innings, before going down in order in their last two turns at bat.
Lehigh Valley (37-27), meanwhile, benefitted from bullpen throwers David Purcey and Phillippe Aumont pitching a perfect eighth and ninth after Cloyd managed to give up just the one run in seven innings.
The Chiefs and IronPigs conclude their four-game series on Tuesday morning at Alliance Bank Stadium. The Education Day game is set to start at 10:30 AM with Syracuse sending Tanner Roark to the mound against Lehigh Valley's Scott Elarton.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.