SYRACUSE, N.Y. (SYRACUSE METS) –
Chris Mazza tossed a gem, and the Syracuse Mets topped the Gwinnett Stripers, 5-0, in front of more than 9,000 fans on Little League Night at NBT Bank Stadium Saturday. The shutout is the fifth of the season for the Syracuse pitching staff.
Mazza stymied Gwinnett (37-30) all night. The right-hander allowed just two hits in eight shutout innings while striking out ten batters for the Mets. The 29-year-old faced just two batters more than the minimum over his 24 recorded outs on the mound. Mazza’s outing was the longest of the season by a Mets pitcher, and he lowered his ERA to 3.14.
Syracuse (33-35) opened the scoring in the bottom of the fourth inning. With one out, Danny Espinosa walked, and Rubén Tejada singled to put runners on first and second base. Gwinnett pitcher Ben Rowen then overthrew a pickoff attempt to second base, allowing Espinosa to score from second and Tejada to advance from first to third on the play as Syracuse took a 1-0 lead. Moments later, René Rivera singled to score Tejada, making it a 2-0 ballgame. The fourth-inning rally continued with a Dilson Herrera two-run homer two batters later, extending the Mets advantage to 4-0. Herrera now has 13 home runs on the season.
The Mets picked up one more run in the home half of the fifth. Mazza helped his own cause with a double to right field to start the inning. Two batters later, Tejada drove Mazza home on a single to push the Syracuse advantage to 5-0.
After Mazza finished his eight scoreless innings on the mound, Mets reliever Stephen Nogosek retired the side in order in the top of the ninth to end the game. Nogosek and Mazza, together, needed just 29 batters to rack up the 27 necessary outs, striking out 12 batters in total.
Syracuse and Gwinnett conclude their three-game series on Sunday afternoon for a Father’s Day matinee at 1:05 p.m. at NBT Bank Stadium.