BUFFALO – The Buffalo Bisons received key offensive contributions up and down the order on Thursday night and were able to hold for a 7-6 victory over the Norfolk Tides at Sahlen Field.
Ernie Clement re-joined the Bisons from Toronto earlier in the day and immediately announced his presence with an RBI double to score the game’s first run. Rafael Lantigua doubled and scored on the Clement base hit to give Buffalo a 1-0 lead through an inning.
The Bisons added to the lead with solo runs in each of the next two innings as well to lead Norfolk 3-0 through three innings. Otto Lopez used a fielder’s choice to score Addison Barger in the bottom of the second. The RBI ground ball doubled the Bisons lead to 2-0. Barger then drove in a run the next inning for his 41st RBI of the year and balloon the lead to 3-0 over the Tides.
Mitch White started for the Bisons and struck out a career-high 10 before leaving with two runners on in the top of the fifth inning. Brandon Eisert came out of the bullpen and allowed one inherited run to score, trimming the Bisons lead to 3-1 halfway through the game.
Eisert’s appearance was his 58th of the season to set a new Bisons Modern Era single-season record for games pitched. The lefty broke the tie with Fernando Cabrera and Rich Batchelor who each pitched 57 times in their respective seasons.
Buffalo was able to get the right back in the bottom of the fifth and added to the lead with three runs in the frame. Luis De Los Santos added an RBI with a fielder’s choice to give Buffalo a 4-1 advantage.
Nathan Lukes added his first hit of the game with an RBI single that scored De Los Santos. Lantigua collected his third hit of the game with a two-run single. The base hit increased Lantigua’s RBI total to 85 on the season, also extending the Bisons lead to 7-1. Clement added his fourth hit of the game with a two-out single, as well.
Connor Norby belted his third home run in as many days with a two-run shot in the top of the sixth inning to cut Buffalo’s lead to 7-3. The Tides would trim the deficit to just one run, 7-6, with three runs in the top of the seventh inning.
Josh Lester added an RBI base hit to score Coby Mayo and make the score 7-4. A pair of errors on a pick-off attempt allowed two runs to score and bring Norfolk within one. However, Yosver Zulueta and Rowan Wick would combine for the final seven outs to preserve the win. Zulueta was credited with his fourth win of the season for his efforts.
Ricky Tiedemann is scheduled to make his Bisons and Triple-A debut on Friday in game four of the six-game series against Norfolk. First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. at Sahlen Field.
All WNY is made possible thanks to coffee and sleep deprivation.
We appreciate your readership. We like money, too.