A two-run home run from Chris Nelson in the third inning helped give the Syracuse Chiefs a 7-5 win over the Buffalo Bisons on Tuesday night at Coca-Cola Field.
The Herd had taken a 2-1 lead in the first inning on a sacrifice fly by Melky Mesa and a single by Caleb Gindl.
But the Chiefs tied the game on a sacrifice fly in the second and took the lead on the home run in the third.
The Bisons cut the lead to 4-3 in the fourth when a ground out by Dalton Pompey scored a run but the Chiefs added two unearned runs in the seventh on a pair of passed balls by Sean Ochinko.
The Herd rallied in the eighth, making it a 6-5 game on an RBI double from Gindl and an RBI single from Ochinko, but the Chiefs added a run in the ninth.
MLB rehab: Jayson Werth continued his rehabilitation assignment from the Washington Nationals, playing left field for the Chiefs. He singled in his first at-bat and added an RBI base hit in the ninth. He went 2 for 4 with a strikeout and a walk.
MLB rehab II: Aaron Sanchez pitched in late relief as he works his way back to the Blue Jays from an upper back muscle strain. He threw 24 pitches, 11 for strikes, in ∏ of an inning. He gave up one hit, issued two walks and struck out one. Two runs scored, but both were unearned off passed balls.
Hague’s numbers: By now it’s evident – Matt Hague is the best hitter in the International League. He’s also on the cusp of being one of the best hitters in the Bisons’ modern era. Heading into Tuesday’s games, he had already reached year-end league qualifications and leads the IL in batting average (.351) and on-base percentage (.436). Both those numbers would be modern day records for the Bisons, passing Dave Clark’s .340 average in 1987 and Torey Lovullo’s .413 on-base percentage in 1998. Hague averages 1.319 hits per game, putting him on pace for 187 hits this season – six more than Jhonny Peralta in 2004.
Good as gold: Pitchers Andrew Albers and Jeff Francis were back in Buffalo on Tuesday after a stint with Team Canada at the Pan-Am Games held in Toronto. Canada defeated the United States in extra innings to win Pan-Am gold for the second straight time. Francis appeared in three games with one start and two saves. He had a 4.00 ERA, giving up eight hits, four runs, one walk and nine strikeouts. Albers appeared in three games in relief with a 2.84 ERA. He gave up four runs (two earned) on five hits with one walk and six strikeouts.
Pitchers of record: Joel Pineiro (1-2) took the loss. Bruce Billings (6-4) picked up the win.
Game time: 3:08.
Paid attendance: 7,485.
Records: The Bisons are 48-49. Syracuse is 39-59.
Next up: The series continues at 7:05 p.m. Wednesday with lefty Daniel Norris (2-10, 4.15) getting the start against righty Taylor Hill (3-4, 5.07). The homestand concludes at 1:05 p.m. Thursday.