April 22, 2017
Story and Photo by Jake Lapin SYRACUSE, N.Y. — After a slow start to the season, the Syracuse Chiefs kept things rolling in front of 2200 fans with their fifth-straight win in a 9-4 victory over the Norfolk Tides at NBT Bank Stadium, Saturday afternoon. “We’re playing good baseball,” manager Billy Gardner said after the game. […]
Story and Photo by Jake Lapin
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — After a slow start to the season, the Syracuse Chiefs kept things rolling in front of 2200 fans with their fifth-straight win in a 9-4 victory over the Norfolk Tides at NBT Bank Stadium, Saturday afternoon.
“We’re playing good baseball,” manager Billy Gardner said after the game. “Pitching and defense have been key for us right now.”
For a team clicking defensively and on the mound, the Chiefs also piled it on from the plate. Every batter in the lineup had at least one hit in the nine-run explosion. The Chiefs as a team had scored just 13 runs in their previous four wins to start the streak.
Big Bats From Top to Bottom
It was all about the offense in the Chiefs’ second game versus Norfolk in this three-game set. Syracuse put up a crooked number in three different frames, chasing Norfolk’s Tyler Wilson after just three innings and four earned runs. Not only did the entire lineup get a basehit, but also all but Adrian Sanchez crossed home plate.
The bottom three hitters in the lineup today, Caleb Ramsey, Sanchez and Irving Falu in that order, are all hitting above .300 on the season.
Ramsey went 3-for-4 with two doubles on the afternoon, both nearly homers off the right field wall. One of those doubles came with two-outs and drove in two runs, opening up the Chiefs’ lead to five in the bottom of the seventh.
“Any time you get the guys at the bottom of the order swinging the bats and getting on-base you’re going to do some damage,” Gardner said.
Taylor on the Hill
Taylor Hill picked up his first win on the season, throwing six innings of two-run ball. He’s struggled early on this season, with his ERA still over seven, but settled in today after a couple of early Norfolk runs.
“I thought he did a nice job,” Gardner said. “His changeup was very effective, threw some curveballs for strikes.”
Neal Cotts came in with runners on the corners and one out in the seventh, one run already scored for Norfolk. He limited the damage started by Mike Broadway to just one more run thanks to a big strikeout of Chance Sisco, the number one prospect for the Baltimore Orioles according to MLB.com, to retire the side.
Those two runs marked the first surrendered by the bullpen in 13 innings. Rafael Martin threw a scoreless eighth and ninth to finish off the win.
The Chiefs will be looking for the sweep over Norfolk and their sixth-straight win in the series finale Sunday at 1:05 pm. After that, they hit the road on Tuesday for a three-game set with the Durham Bulls and then a rematch with the Tides in Norfolk.
The Tides have a six-game homestand waiting for them back home starting Tuesday, starting with the Buffalo Bisons and then a weekend series against Syracuse.