By Josh Cook
Louisville's late rally came up short Friday night as the Bats fell 5-3 at Syracuse.
The International League North Division-leading Chiefs (35-26) built a 5-0 lead before Louisville scored thrice over the final two innings, but Syracuse held on to end the Bats' two-game win streak at Alliance Bank Stadium.
The Chiefs scored once in the first inning and three times in the third against Louisville starter Chad Reineke. They added another in the seventh off Bats reliever Jesus Delgado.
Louisville (28-34) plated its first run in the eighth inning on Wladimir Balentin's solo home run - his 10th of the season.
The Bats continued to comeback in the ninth. Chris Burke led off with a single against Syracuse reliever Joel Peralta, then scored on Chris Valaika's double.
Chris Denove struck out before pinch-hitter Jake Long singled to move Valaika to third. Drew Sutton then grounded out to score Valaika. But the Bats' rally ended when Peralta struck out Zack Cozart to end the game.
Burke, Valaika and Yonder Alonso led Louisville's nine-hit attack with two apiece. But the Bats couldn't advance baserunners when it mattered most, they were 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
Reineke (2-5) gave up 10 hits and four earned runs while walking one and striking out three in six innings.
Meanwhile Syracuse shortstop Pete Orr - who hit the winning home run in the first game of this four-game series - led the Chiefs at the plate with a single, double and triple. He also scored three runs to help starter Shairon Martis pick up the victory. Martis (4-4) pitched 6 1/3 innings of shutout baseball, yielding five hits and walking two while striking out three.
The Bats begin a four-game series at Pawtucket at 6:05 p.m. Saturday night.