A five-run eighth inning lifted the Pawtucket Red Sox over the Syracuse Chiefs, 7-4, on Saturday night at NBT Bank Stadium. Clint Robinson had an impressive day at the plate for the Chiefs, tallying a 3-4 line with a pair of doubles, a single, and a walk. On the mound,
A five-run eighth inning lifted the Pawtucket Red Sox over the Syracuse Chiefs, 7-4, on Saturday night at NBT Bank Stadium. Clint Robinson had an impressive day at the plate for the Chiefs, tallying a 3-4 line with a pair of doubles, a single, and a walk. On the mound, A.J. Cole pitched admirably, allowing just two runs in six innings of work while fanning six.
Syracuse (32-58) broke open a pitchers' duel in the bottom of the fifth inning against Jalen Beeks. Alejandro De Aza led off the frame by smacking a fly ball over the head of Ryan Court in left field for a double. After a Michael Almanzar groundout advanced De Aza to third, Jhonatan Solano slapped a ground-ball single into left-center field to plate De Aza and put the Chiefs out in front 1-0.
Pawtucket (47-44) then took the lead in the top of the sixth versus A.J. Cole. With one out, Bryce Brentz singled into center field. After a Court fly out produced the second out of the inning, Rafael Devers, the Red Sox' consensus top prospect, making his Triple-A debut, clobbered a double into right field, allowing Brentz to advance to third. One batter later, Matt Dominguez poked a single into center field, scoring both Brentz and Devers, moving the PawSox out in front 2-1.
The PawSox added to their lead in the eighth with Cody Satterwhite on the mound. Rusney Castillo kicked off the frame with a single into center field. Following a Brentz strikeout, with Court at the plate, Castillo stole second. In the same at-bat, Court hit a soft line drive over the head of Clint Robinson at first. The ball appeared to land in foul territory, but first base umpire Robert Moreno called it fair. Castillo scored on the play that allowed Court to pull into second. Billy Gardner came out to argue the call and crew chief and home plate umpire Dan Merzel called his crew together, but the play stood and doubled the Pawtucket lead to two. After left-hander Neal Cotts entered, Devers hit a 400+ foot, two-run home run over the right-field fence for his fourth hit of the day and his first Triple-A homer. One batter later, Heiker Meneses continued the rally with a single into left field. In the next at-bat, former Chief Dan Butler doubled off the center-field fence, scoring Meneses. Aneury Tavarez followed with a single into left field, bringing Butler in to score, and increasing the Pawtucket lead to 7-1.
The Chiefs retrieved a pair of runs in the bottom of the eighth. With Jamie Callahan on the mound, Irving Falu walked to lead off the inning. After a Neftali Soto strikeout, Robinson doubled for the second time, advancing Falu to third in the process. In the next at-bat, Pedro Severino grounded out to Devers at third which allowed Falu to score. One batter later, De Aza hit a ground ball at the shortstop Brock Holt. The ball careened off Holt's glove and into the outfield for a hit, scoring Robinson and cutting the PawSox' lead to 7-3.
A ninth-inning rally pulled the Chiefs slightly closer in the final frame. With one out, Emmanuel Burriss singled into right field versus Noe Ramirez. After moving up to second on defensive indifference with Andrew Stevenson at the plate, Burriss scored on a Falu single over the head of Dominguez at first, plating Burriss and shrinking the lead to 7-4. With the tying run on deck, Ramirez struck out Soto to end the game.
Despite the final score, the starting pitching set the tone for much of the early part of the game with an outstanding pair of performances from both Cole and Beeks. Cole tossed six innings, allowing just two runs on eight hits, and striking out six. Meanwhile, for Pawtucket, Beeks was also brilliant, hurling six innings of one-run ball, allowing just five hits and punching out six.
The Chiefs and PawSox finish up a four-game series Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. from NBT Bank Stadium. Jaron Long is scheduled to take the hill for Syracuse opposite right-hander Marcus Walden for Pawtucket.