The Toledo Mud Hens stayed hot in the month of August with a 7-3 victory over the Syracuse Chiefs in the series finale on Wednesday night. The offense collected 14 hits in the victory, three of which coming off the bat of Jeimer Candelario.
Toledo starting pitcher Anthony Vasquez spun a scoreless first inning thanks to an inning-ending double play. Jacob Turner also threw a zero for the Chiefs, stranding a single and a walk.
The Hens struck first in the bottom of the second inning when Bryan Holady hit a sac fly to left that brought home JaCoby Jones who reached on a single to lead off the frame.
It didn't take long for the Chiefs to respond as they took the lead in the top of the third with a pair of runs. Chad Huffman singled and Michael Almanzar doubled to put men at second and third with nobody out. Irving Falu put Syracuse on the board with an RBI single and Neftali Soto gave them the lead with a single.
The back-and-forth battle continued early as Toledo struck back with two of their own in the bottom of the third. Jeimer Candelario singled with one out and Tyler Collins walked to put a pair on base. With two outs, Jason Krizan doubled down the right field line to score both runners and gave the Hens a 3-2 lead after three innings.
An Omar Infante double brought home Alex Presley in the fourth to extend the advantage to 4-2. The two-base hit was the 20th of the season for Infante, which is the best on the club this season.
Vasquez allowed three base runners in the top of the fifth against the Chiefs but a double play and a strikeout prevented them from cutting into their deficit. Logan Kensing entered in the top of the sixth as he made his International League leading 52nd appearance this year. He allowed two two-out hits but got out of the inning without allowing a run.
Syracuse starter Jacob Turner threw the first 5.0 innings, allowing eight hits, four runs, walked four, and struck out four.
Neil Ramirez came on in relief in the sixth and after recording two quick outs to begin the inning, the Hens put together a two-out rally to boost their lead to 6-2. Efren Navarro singled and Jeimer Candelario triples to the right-center field gap to bring him home. Tyler Collins followed and legged out an infield single to plate Candelario.
In the top of the seventh, Blaine Hardy came on to relieve Kensing. Hardy allowed a one-out double to Soto but stranded him by retiring the next two Chiefs.
Ramirez stayed on for Syracuse in the bottom of the seventh and allowed back-to-back hits to Holaday and Brendan Ryan, but got the next three Hens batters to escape trouble and keep the game at 6-2 after seven.
In the top of the eighth, Zac Reininger put down the Chiefs 1-2-3. Kevin Jepsen pitched the bottom of the eighth for Syracuse and Candelario greeted him with a leadoff home run to give the Hens a 7-2 advantage.
Reininger continued in the ninth and allowed a two-out run on a Soto RBI single. With the base hit, Soto finished a perfect 5-for-5 for the Chiefs. Kyle Ryan came on to get the final out and gave the Hens a 7-3 win.
Toledo will host the Buffalo Bisons for a four-game series beginning on Thursday. First pitch in Game 1 is set for 7:05 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.