Syracuse Crushes RailRiders In Series Finale
MOOSIC — Fifty-two hits. Thirty-eight runs. Nineteen extra-base hits.
One loss. Three wins.
Syracuse finished off the RailRiders with one more pounding Monday afternoon.
The Chiefs pulled away on Yadiel Hernandez’s three-run homer in the eighth inning, then turned it into another rout with three two-run homers in the ninth to beat the RailRiders, 14-4, and take three of four in the series.
Syracuse outscored the RailRiders, 38-17, in the series, outhit them, 52-38, and had six more extra-base hits. They also made zero errors, while the RailRiders (22-27) committed five, falling to 3-8 in their last 11 games.
“We’re not playing very well, really,” RailRiders manager Bobby Mitchell said.
“Disappointed to lose three of four at home. I think we’re better than that, but we’ve got to show it on the field.”
The RailRiders had an early 3-1 lead Monday, but another short outing from their starter turned the game over to the bullpen in the fifth inning.
On Friday, David Hale allowed five runs in 4⅓ innings. Saturday and Sunday starters Adam Warren and Chance Adams worked a combined 1⅓ innings. On Monday, Justus Sheffield labored through the first inning and then settled down, but ran up against a pitch count and left after four innings. He allowed one run on four hits, walked two and struck out two.
“Even in the first, I felt really good,” said Sheffield, who needed 34 pitches to get through the game’s first six batters. “I felt like I was making good pitches, but I’m thinking I need to land a little bit more strikes, especially in the first inning. Not so much focusing on getting guys to swing and miss, because I feel like I was throwing good pitches — good swing-and-miss pitches — they were just taking them.”
Syracuse cut it to 3-2 in the fifth off Oliver Perez, then had 14 hits over the final four innings. A delayed steal, an error and Tuffy Gosewisch’s double tacked on two runs off Brady Lail in the sixth, though Lail would bounce back with two strikeouts and a perfect seventh — SWB’s only three-up, three-down inning in the game.
Hernandez lined an opposite-field, three-run homer off Nestor Cortes with no outs in the eighth for a 7-3 lead ahead of Syracuse’s monster ninth inning against Cale Coshow.
Jaff Decker singled, then Irving Falu homered.
Jose Marmolejos singled, then Moises Sierra homered.
Jacob Wilson doubled, then Hernandez hit a long home run off the walkway in left-center field.
Coshow, who was pumping 98-mph fastballs, struck out Gosewisch — the seventh batter of the inning — for the first out. Three more hits, and it was 14-3.
“Baseball: That’s what it means,” said Coshow, who took the mound with a 2.08 ERA this season and left it at 4.91. “It just kind of sucks. I thought I was making pretty good pitches, but apparently not. It’s just one of those games. It sucks, but at the end of the day, this is one outing. I think I’ve been pitching pretty well this season. Take it with a grain of salt. It kind of sucks. Got a butt whoppin.’ Tomorrow’s a new day.”
The RailRiders needed 24 innings from their bullpen in the four-game series.
“Not what you want, both ways,” Sheffield said. “We’ve got to be able to execute on the mound. Our starters, we’ve got to be able to pitch deep into games, give our bullpen a breath. They’ve been taxed out. I feel like I’ve seen guys going back-to-back days too many times in bad situations. It’s big for us, myself included, to pitch deep into games.”
After Sheffield surrendered a run in the top of the first, the RailRiders came back with three in the bottom of the inning.
Tyler Wade walked on four pitches against Syracuse starter Erick Fedde, then Clint Frazier surprised the Chiefs with a bunt single — one of his four hits on the afternoon.
Brandon Drury walked to load the bases and Mike Ford made it 1-0 when he took a pitch from Fedde off the leg. Ryan McBroom launched a fly ball to center for a sacrifice fly and a 2-1 lead and Rey Navarro singled in another run.
Even with at least one base runner every inning, however, the RailRiders wouldn’t get another run until the ninth, when Frazier singled, hustled to third on a base hit by Drury and scored on a wild pitch.
“That team just hit,” said Frazier, who also stole two bases. “It was almost like they knew what pitches were coming. But I think, someone said, the series before they had a lot of hits coming in. So, the guys are hot right now. It’s not like as an offense we put up a ton of runs to back them up. So, it’s a full team effort on all of us that we’ve just got to go out there and try to compete with those guys as much as they’re competing with us.”
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