The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, lost their second straight game in a 3-2 defeat to the Norfolk Tides on Sunday night. Steve Tolleson's sacrifice fly broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning for Norfolk, and the Chiefs stranded runners at second and third with one out in the eighth inning. The Tides have now claimed the first two games of this four-game series.
Syracuse (43-40) got on the board first with a second-inning run against Tides left-hander Zach Britton. Chris Marrero led off the inning with a single. Two batters later, Brett Carroll's fielder's choice erased Marrero, but Carroll reached first base on the play and subsequently stole second. Designated hitter Xavier Paul then lined a 1-2 pitch into center field for an RBI single, scoring Carroll for the game's first run.
Norfolk (42-43) answered one inning later against Syracuse left-hander John Lannan. Right fielder Lew Ford led off the inning with a solo home run, one of his three hits in the game, to tie the game at one.
The Tides then added a run in the bottom of the fourth inning. First baseman Joe Mahoney doubled on Lannan's first pitch of the inning and moved to third base on a Caleb Joseph groundout. Second baseman Blake Davis then blooped an 0-2 pitch into right field for a run-scoring single, giving the Tides a 2-1 lead.
Meanwhile, Syracuse had been held hitless from the second inning on by Britton, but the Chiefs finally struck in the top of the sixth. Erik Komatsu walked to start the inning, and two batters later, third baseman Brandon Waring's fielding error on a Marrero ground ball put runners on the corners with one out. After a Carlos Rivero line out, Carroll hit a dribbler down the third base line and beat out Britton's throw for an RBI infield single. Komatsu crossed home plate to even the score at two.
The Tides then reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the seventh frame. With one out, Ford reached on an infield single, ending Lannan's night after six and one-third innings. With right-hander Hassan Pena on, L.J. Hoes hit an infield single to second base. Ford, who had been running on the pitch, made it to third base. Tolleson then hit a 1-0 pitch deep enough into right field to score Ford from third base, giving Norfolk a 3-2 lead.
Syracuse had one more rally in its bats in the eighth. With one out, Marrero walked against eventual winning pitcher Eric Beaulac, a right-hander who made his Triple-A debut. International League All-Star Miguel Socolovich then relieved Beaulac, but Rivero greeted the right-hander rudely with a double to left field, moving Marrero to third. Socolovich then beared down, striking out Carroll in an 11-pitch battle before inducing a groundout from Paul on eight pitches.
The Chiefs were retired in order in the ninth, as Socolovich struck out Seth Bynum and Carlos Maldonado before left-hander J.C. Romero retired Corey Brown on a groundout. The out meant Brown's hit streak ended at 18 games, though his season-high on-base streak was extended to 22 games on a seventh-inning walk.
Syracuse will look for its first win in Norfolk on Monday night at 7:15. Right-handers Tanner Roark and Chris Tillman are the scheduled starters for the Chiefs and Tides, respectively.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.