Matt Ford, making his fifth start of the season faced Syracuse’s Wayne Lydon to lead off the game. Lydon grounded to Glenn Williams, who booted the ball for his 17th error of the season. After getting the next two hitters, Ford was one strike away from getting out of the inning. But ex major leaguer Jason Phillips dumped a single up the middle and the SkyChiefs grabbed a 1-0 lead. That run proved to ultimately be the difference in a frustrating 5-4 loss for the hot and cold, undermanned Rochester Red Wings.
Syracuse’s Josh Towers, trying to work his way back to Toronto, pitched six innings, giving up three runs on eight hits. As usual, he walked none, and fanned four to pick up his third win of the season for the SkyChiefs.
Wings made a game of it in the fourth after falling behind the SkyChiefs 4-0. With the bases loaded and two outs, Tommy Watkins worked the count full, and with all the runners in motion, lined a bases clearing double to the gap to close the margin to 4-3. The Chiefs however came right back in the fifth, scoring a run to extend their lead to 5-3. The Red Wings scored again in the sixth on a ground out by an improving Alexander Romero. Romero the proceeded to steal second but was left there when Watkins flew out.
But that was it. The Wings couldn’t get a runner in from third with one out in the seventh, and they got the lead runner on in the 9th, but stranded him there as Shawn Wooten, Andres Torres and Glenn Williams all went down weakly.
It was a tough loss to a team that scored 23 runs the night before. Fortunately, Scranton lost, so the Wings lead remains 2.5 games. Henry Bonilla and Beau Kemp provided good relief for the Red Wings, giving up one run and three hits over the last 5.1 innings. Erubiel Durazo had two more hits, but was called out on strikes on a 3-2 pitch with runners on firstt and third in the pivotal sixth inning.
5,414 watched in the steamy 87 degree heat and high humidity. Matt Ford falls to 1-1 on the season. Wings outhit the Chiefs 10-9.