The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, unleashed an offensive explosion on Thursday morning in a 17-9 win over Rochester. The Chiefs scored in seven of the game's nine innings, setting several season-high offensive marks in the victory.
Syracuse (48-56) got on the board first against right-hander Eric Hurley, making his first start with the Red Wings. With two outs in the top of the first inning, Mark Teahen walked to bring up Jesus Valdez. The Chiefs' left fielder then slammed a high fastball into the left-field bullpen, giving Syracuse a 2-0 lead.
But it wasn't long before Rochester (52-54) answered. The Red Wings put the first two runners on against right-hander Austin Bibens-Dirkx before a Danny Valencia ground-ball double play. But Clete Thomas followed with an RBI single, and three batters later, shortstop Tsuyoshi Nishioka unloaded the bases with a three-run double to right field. Rochester carried a 4-2 lead into the second.
The Chiefs then took the lead right back. With one out, Manny Mayorson doubled before Seth Bynum grounded an infield single off of Hurley that ricocheted into short left field, scoring Mayorson. Catcher James Skelton then doubled home Bynum in Skelton's first game off the Disabled List since June 11, tying the score at four. Center fielder Eury Perez followed with another double, driving home Skelton on a line drive in the right-center field alley for a 5-4 lead.
Again, though, the Red Wings answered. With two runners on and no one out, designated hitter Chris Parmelee reached down for a low fastball and slammed a three-run home run over the center field wall. That gave Rochester a 7-5 advantage.
The Chiefs would soon tie the game on another long ball. After a Valdez leadoff single in the third inning, Carlos Rivero clubbed a two-run home run to left field, evening the score at seven. Three batters later, Hurley exited after hitting Bynum. The right-hander allowed seven runs on seven hits in two and two-thirds innings.
Syracuse took the lead for good in the fourth inning against left-hander Caleb Thielbar. Perez reached on an infield single to lead off the frame, before Jarrett Hoffpauir doubled to left-center field. Thomas couldn't handle the ball in center field, and Perez came home on the error. Two batters later, Valdez' single through the left side plated Hoffpauir for a 9-7 lead.
After a solo home run from Parmelee in the bottom of the fourth inning - his second homer of the game - the Chiefs answered with a fifth-inning run. Skelton and Perez singled with one out against right-hander Deolis Guerra before Hoffpauir singled to left field to score Skelton. The Chiefs led 10-8 at that point.
Rochester cut the lead to one run in the seventh inning against a pair of Chiefs relievers. Brian Dinkelman doubled and Parmelee walked against eventual winning pitcher Erik Arnesen before another Valencia double play. But left-hander Atahualpa Severino relieved Arnesen and threw a wild pitch, allowing Dinkelman to come home and make the score 10-9.
The one-run lead didn't last long, as the Chiefs put the game on ice with a six-run eighth inning. After Kyle Waldrop recorded the first two outs, Teahen doubled and Valdez singled him to third base. Rivero then lined a single to right field on an 0-2 pitch, scoring Teahen for an 11-9 lead. With an 0-2 count on the next batter, Brett Carroll, Rivero stole second base, and a throwing error on catcher Danny Lehmann allowed Valdez to score. Carroll then smashed a two-run home run down the left-field line, extending the line to 14-9, and two batters later, Bynum greeted left-hander Luke French with another two-run blast. The six-run frame gave Syracuse a 16-9 lead.
The Chiefs would tack on one final run against French in the ninth inning, on a run-scoring fielder's choice from Valdez that plated Perez.
Syracuse's final offensive numbers were staggering. The Chiefs claimed season highs with 17 runs, 22 hits, 11 extra-base hits and seven doubles, while tying a season-best mark with four home runs. Perez, Valdez and Rivero each had four hits, with Valdez driving in four runs and Rivero and Bynum knocking in three. Seven of Syracuse's nine hitters scored at least two runs, with every hitter collecting at least one run and at least one hit.
Syracuse and Rochester will finish their four-game series on Friday night at 7:05. Chiefs right-hander Yunesky Maya and Red Wings righty Jeff Manship are the scheduled starts.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.