Matt Hague continued to show why he’s the best hitter in the International League.
The infielder had three hits, including the game-winning RBI, as the Buffalo Bisons squeaked out a 5-4 win over the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders at Coca-Cola Field Saturday night.
Hague, who will be in the Triple-A All Star Game next week, entered Saturday’s game with a .343 average to lead the International League. He has 36 multi-hit games and 114 hits.
His RBI single in the seventh snapped a 4-4 tie and salvage the win after the Bisons blew an early 4-0 lead.
Building a lead: The Bisons slowly built a 4-0 lead, starting with an RBI single from Luke Scott in the first. They scored twice in the fourth on a ground out by Caleb Gindl and while Alex Hassan scored on a passed ball. In the fifth they added a run on a double from Andy Burns.
Two swings: The Bisons saw their 4-0 lead evaporate in the sixth. Ramon Flores drove a three-run shot to right field then Greg Bird had a solo shot to tie the game.
Generational advice: It’s the third annual Blue Jays Weekend at Coca-Cola Field and alumni Mookie Wilson and Cecil Fielder were in Buffalo for the festivities.
Wilson remains a fan of the game and preaches that no matter how much things change, the game at heart remains the same.
“We old players like to say 'back in the day' and we like to think that we set the standard," Wilson said. "And it rotated. People that played before me said, 'We set the standard, you carry it on.' We like to see players continue to play the game the way it’s supposed to be played. You know, there are new innovations and new techniques and you can incorporate all that stuff but let’s keep one thing in mind, that the game is still baseball. It’s still a man’s game. It’s still a game that’s played for the fans. I’d like to see players remember that. It’s OK to get wrapped up in our own little personal things, arguments and contract negotiations and sponsorships and all that but the game is still baseball and I’d like people to remember that.”
Pitchers of record: Joel Pineiro (1-1) picked up the win. Brandon Pinder (0-3) took the loss. Bobby Korecky earned his sixth save.
Time of game: 2:14
Paid attendance: 8,314
Records: The Bisons are 45-45. Scranton is 47-44.
Next up: The series concludes at 1:05 Sunday with lefty Daniel Norris (2-8, 3.62) scheduled to start for the Bisons with Scranton starting righty Luis Severino (4-0, 1.99). It's the last game before the three-day break for the Triple-A All-Star Game.