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Chiefs scrap for close win

Three run fifth sparks Chiefs in win
August 7, 2012
The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, won the series finale against the Buffalo Bisons, 4-3, Tuesday night at Alliance Bank Stadium. Mark Teahen's two-run triple put the Chiefs ahead for good in the bottom of the fifth inning and the Syracuse bullpen preserved the win by tossing three scoreless innings.

After two scoreless innings, Buffalo (57-60) got on the board first in the top of the third inning. Fred Lewis crushed Yunesky Maya's offering over the right-field wall and into the Family Park to make the score 1-0 Buffalo.

Syracuse (56-61) finally got to Bisons starter Collin McHugh in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Chiefs, who entered the frame with just two hits through four innings, pounded out four hits in the inning, capped by Teahen's two-run triple and Carlos Rivero's RBI single to put the Chiefs up 3-1.

The Chiefs then tacked on what would turn out to be a crucial insurance run in the bottom of the sixth inning. Carlos Maldonado pulverized a pitch from McHugh for a solo home run to left-center field that gave Syracuse a 4-1 lead.

The Bisons cut into that three-run lead in the top of the seventh inning. Matt den Dekker and Mike Nickeas started the inning with back-to-back singles that chased Maya from the game. Valentino Pascucci then welcomed Hassan Pena to the game with a run-scoring single that brought home den Dekker. Next, Pena walked Lewis to load the bases. After Josh Rodriguez flew out to shallow right field for the first out of the inning, Pena was replaced by Mike MacDougal. The first hitter MacDougal faced, Lucas Duda, singled to right field to plate Nickeas and cut the Syracuse lead to 4-3. From there though, MacDougal stiffened. He struck out Zach Lutz and forced Adam Loewen to ground out with the bases loaded, preserving the Chiefs' one-run lead through seven innings.

Syracuse almost added on another run in the bottom of the eighth inning, but Manny Mayorson was thrown out by the right fielder Lewis as he tried to score from second on Eury Perez's single.

On the other side, the Chiefs then turned the ball over to closer Christian Garcia in the top of the eighth inning. Garcia breezed through the eighth by inducing three straight Buffalo groundouts. Then, Garcia slammed the door shut in the top of the ninth inning with another perfect frame to end the game. The two scoreless innings for Garcia extended his season-high scoreless-inning streak to 17 and one-third innings.

Syracuse starts a four-game road swing Wednesday night in Pawtucket. Left-hander John Lannan will get the start for the Chiefs. Another southpaw, Chris Hernandez, is scheduled to pitch for the Red Sox. First pitch is slated for 7:05.