JULY 25, 2009: Syracuse, NY - There was a huge crowd before this game. Well, huge for Syracuse, NY. They had a "tailgate party," with food and drink specials sold in the parking lot before the game, some local bands playing, and people signing autographs. There were a lot of older women at this game, and I soon figured out why: the Chiefs had gotten some hunky soap opera star to sign autographs before and during the game. Many fans missed several innings waiting in line for Mr. Soap Stud.
Me, I was there to see Travis Wood's AAA debut. He did not disappoint.
Darnell McDonald hit a two-out single in the first inning...
Then came home on a Kevin Barker triple.
Wes Bankston reached on an error by SS Ian Desmond, then went to 2B on a throwing error by Desmond. (Yup, Desmond made two errors on one play, poor guy. Desmond is considered a good prospect and a good fielder, but he ended up making three errors in this game. He only had one all season until this game.)
Bankston was stranded when SS Eric Eymann flied out.
The radar gun at the ballpark was working tonight (it worked two out of the four nights I was there). Wood topped out in the upper 80s. Detwiler hit the lower to mid-90s.
Wood was decent at the dish.
He walked in the second, and reached on an error in the 4th. (Throwing error by...you guessed it...Ian Desmond.)
Detwiler got a walk himself.
Kevin Barker was 2 for 3 with a walk, a double, and triple. And he was pretty solid at 1B, too.
Corky Miller caught the game. Check out his vintage stirrups.
Chris Heisey played LF and was 1 for 4.
Drew Stubbs was in CF. He was 0 for 4 with 2 strikeouts, but did get a RBI (grounded into a forceout).
Drew Stubbs catches a fly ball. One of the Chiefs staff was behind him, filming the batters.
The hapless Ian Desmond was 0 for 4 with 2 Ks.
Eliajh Dukes in left field. Some medical company was giving away blue balloons during the "tailgate party," and they ended up floating all over the field during the game.
Wood had a pretty good night.
6.2 innings pitched, 3 hits, 1 run, 1 earned run, 4 walks, 5 strikeouts, 1 home run, 1.35 ERA.
They probably should have pulled him after six innings. He gave up a home run and a walk in 7th.
Zach Stewart (sigh) came in to get the last out. (Corey Patterson swung at the first pitch and grounded into a forceout.)
Josh Wilkie took over for Detwiler in the 8th.
Elijah Dukes had just been sent down from the Nationals, and has since been called up again.
Stewart gave up two singles and a walk in the bottom of the 8th. Pete Orr stole 2B.
After a runner scored on a forceout, Robert Manuel took over for Stewart.
It was 3-2 Louisville in the 9th, and I really thought they could hold on and win. Alas, it was not to be. Seth Bynum and Justin Maxwell (another of the Nats' top prospects) singled off Manuel. Gustavo Molina laid down a sac bunt, then Jorge Padilla hit a 2-RBI single.
Maxwell, the winning run, comes home:
Walkoff victory for the Chiefs.
Final score: Louisville 3, Syracuse 4.