COLUMBUS, Ohio – Kevin Nolan, who had entered the game as a pinch-runner the inning before, hit a three-run homer in the top of the ninth Wednesday night to give the Buffalo Bisons a 5-2 victory over the Columbus Clippers at Huntington Park. It was the first for the season as a Bison for Nolan, who was not even listed on the Buffalo roster for the game because he just had rejoined the team from Double-A.
Nolan homered after Chris Dickerson had led off with a single and stole second and Brad Glenn drew a walk after two batters were retired. His homer came against reliever Dustin Molleken of the Clippers.The win preserved the Bisons’ distinction of never having lost a series at Huntington Park. The won two games in the three-game set with the Cleveland Indians affiliate.
Wolf’s woes: You might think Randy Wolf is in a slump. The veteran left-hander hasn’t won a game in almost a month for the Bisons, even though he has allowed only one earned run in 32 innings.
After shutting out Columbus for seven innings Wednesday night, the 38-year-old Wolf left with a 2-0 lead. However, the Buffalo bullpen gave it right back, leaving Wolf with a no-decision. He is still 3-0 and his earned-run average, which dropped to 0.94, still leads the International League.
Usual suspects: Matt Hague and Brad Glenn, who have been leading the Bisons’ attack lately, did it again Wednesday. They got the Herd’s two-run rally in the eighth started with a leadoff double by Hague followed by a single by Glenn. Despite another hit, it took two bases-loaded walks to get the two Buffalo runs across, giving the Bisons bullpen a 2-0 lead to work with. Hague who went 3 for 4 is now batting .347. He has hit safetly in 20 of his last 21 games. Glenn (1 for 3) is batting .421 since May 11.
Hit man: Leading 2-0 going into the bottom of the eighth, the Bisons got into trouble right away when reliever Chad Jenkins hit the leadoff man Adam Lavisky with a pitch. Jesus Aguilar followed with a double and a sacrifice fly by Jerry Sands and a single by Adam Moore got the runs home, tying the game at 2-2, going into the ninth. Jenkins got out of the inning when Francisco Lindor lined out to right to leave the bases full.
Reyes joining Herd: Blue Jays shortstop Jose Reyes will join the Bisons on Thursday in Toledo to begin an MLB injury rehabilitation assignment. Toronto placed Reyes on the disabled list on April 27 with a left rib fracture. The four-time MLB All-Star rehabbed for four games with the Bisons in 2013, batting .412 with a double and an RBI.
To the rescue: Infielder Ryan Schimpf pitched one scoreless inning as a relief pitcher to earn the save in the Herd’s 5-4 victory over the Clippers on Tuesday. The last Bisons position player to earn a pitching decision was infielder Trent Durrington on May 5, 2007. Although he pitched only one-third of an inning and walked two batters, the native of Australia got credit for the win when the Bisons rallied for nine runs in the bottom of the ninth for a 15-14 victory over Pawtucket.
Kawasaki back: Infielder Munenori Kawasaki was activated off the DL and started Wednesday night’s game at second base. Outfielder Caleb Gindl, who was injured in the first inning of Tuesday night’s game, went on the DL. Right-hand pitcher Austin Bibens-Dirkx was promoted from Double-A New Hampshire. Bibens-Dirkx was 0-1 with a 5,5 ERA for the Bisons in three starts before he was sent to New Hampshire
On to Toledo: The Bisons will begin a four-game series against the Mud Hens Thursday night with lefty Andrew Albers (2-5, 2.34) of the Herd to oppose lefty Mike Belfiore (1-6, 7.36) of the Mud Hens (Radio 1520, 6:30 p.m.).
Attendance: The Clippers announced 8,333 for an overcast night with temperatures in the 50s in Central Ohio.