Louisville, KY - The Syracuse Mets beat the Louisville Bats, 6-1, on Wednesday afternoon at Louisville Slugger Field. Danny Espinosa and two hits and three RBIs for the Mets in the win.
Syracuse (18-14) struck first in the top of the third inning. Mets starting pitcher Héctor Santiago helped his own cause with a a leadoff single, and Grégor Blanco walked, placing runners at first and second base. Two batters later, Dominic Smith hit a ground-rule double to right field, scoring Santiago for a 1-0 Mets lead. Two batters after that, Espinosa hit a two-out single to right field that brought home both Blanco and Smith to extend the Syracuse advantage to 3-0.
Louisville (14-19) got on the board in the bottom of the fifth. Luis Gonzalez singled to begin the frame, moved to second on a Blake Trahan sacrifice bunt, and Gonzalez scored on a Narcisco Crook pinch-hit double to left field, that trimmed the Syracuse lead to two, 3-1.
The Mets responded in the top of the sixth. Espinosa led off with a home run that he hammered over the wall in center field to make it a 4-1 ballgame. The homer was Espinosa's fourth of the season.
Syracuse added an exclamation point on the day in the eighth. With two outs, Tim Tebow walked. Travis Taijeron then came to the plate as a pinch hitter and hit his team-leading eighth home run of the season, pushing the Syracuse lead to five, 6-1.
Mets pitchers were strong throughout the game. Santiago was perfect through three-and-2/3 innings and didn't allow a hit through the first four frames. In all, the left-hander allowed only three hits and one run in six innings on the mound with four strikeouts. Relievers Eric Hanhold, Paul Sewald, and Ryan O'Rourke combined to allow just one baserunner over three scoreless innings to close out the game.
Syracuse and Louisville conclude their three-game series on Thursday night. RHP Casey Coleman is scheduled to throw for the Mets while RHP Vladimir Gutierrez will be on the mound for the Bats. First pitch is set for 7:00 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.