Scott Copeland pitched effectively into the sixth inning – his second-straight quality start – but the Buffalo bullpen let him down and the Bisons dropped a 6-1 decision to the Syracuse Chiefs Wednesday night. It came before 3,146 people at NBT Bank Stadium in Syracuse.
Copeland allowed just one run and four hits before turning things over to Chad Girodo with one out in the sixth. Girodo promptly gave up a solo home run to Matt Skole. A walk and a double by Matt den Dekker produced another run. Matt Dermody took over for Girodo in the seventh and walked two batters before a two-run double by Jason Martinson.
The Bisons had eight hits and four walks but could produce only one run against three Syracuse pitchers. Austin Voth (6-7) went seven innings for the win.
Junior Lake’s infield single drove home Matt Dominguez with the lone Buffalo run in the sixth, tying the game at 1.
Finishing up: Thursday night’s game will be the last one this season between the Bisons and their I.L. North Division rival Chiefs. Buffalo clinched the season series with a split of Tuesday night’s doubleheader and has posted double-digit win totals against Syracuse in four of the last five years, going 50-36.
Half a century: Dominquez of the Bisons reached the 50 mark for the season in RBIs when he drove in two in the second game Tuesday night. The Herd is the only team in the I.L. with two batters with 50 or more RBIs. Jesus Montero leads the Bisons with 53 RBIs.
In the Loup: Left-handed relief Aaron Loup has now thrown 12 scoreless outings (12.1 innings) for the Bisons. He added to his string with a scoreless inning in Tuesday night’s victory over the Chiefs.
Up next: The Bisons and Chiefs will wrap up the four-game series Thursday night (6:35 p.m., Radio 1520 AM) with lefty Scott Diamond (7-10, 3.42) scheduled to start for the Herd against right-hander A.J. Cole (7-7, 4.24) of the Chiefs. The Bisons will move on Friday for the opener of a three-game series at Pawtucket before an off day on Monday. A three-game set with Indianapolis, the Indians’ only visit this season, will begin a nine-game homestand for Buffalo starting Tuesday night.