It was a Friday filled with rallies and roster moves at Coca-Cola Field.
The Buffalo Bisons dug themselves out of a 4-0 hole, including loading the bases in the ninth inning, but fell short in a 6-5 loss to the Louisville Bats.
Meanwhile, the lineup action was just as intriguing as the Herd pulled both Darrell Ceciliani and Rob Refsnyder during the game.
Ceciliani rehab woes: Ceciliani started the game in center field and singled in his at-bat in the first inning, hitting second in the order. But he was replaced in the third inning with Roemon Fields when his shoulder started to bother him. He was with the Bisons on a Major League rehabilitation assignment as he recovers from a partially dislocated shoulder.
"He said he felt something not right with his shoulder," Bisons manager Bobby Meacham said. "I saw him swinging it around and around and" team athletic trainer Voon Chong "looked at him and said, yeah, we need to get him out. So he's going to go up to Toronto and they're going to have a doctor up there take a look at it."
Preparing for a call-up: Refsnyder was pulled in the seventh inning after going 1 for 2 with a walk and a run scored along with a few impressive defensive plays at second base.
Meacham said they took Refsnyder out shortly after Toronto infielder Troy Tulowitzki left the Blue Jays game with a sprained right ankle.
"It's all hands on deck all the time, here," Meacham said. "He's ready to go up there if they need him. He's the logical guy to go if something were to go wrong with an infielder. I think that's the thinking. Le'ts get him out just in case."
Rally time: Trailing, 6-4 in the ninth, the Bisons got back-to-back base hits from Michael Saunders and Roemon Fields. A hit back to the pitcher from Jason Leblebijian moved the runners into scoring position. After an intentional walk issued to Dwight Smith Jr., Saunders scored on a passed ball.
Gregorio Petit struck out and the Bats issued an intentional walk to Raffy Lopez to load the bases with two outs, but Jake Elmore grounded out to short to end the game.
Meacham on the rally: "We talked about it before the game started, if they get the ball up, just attack it," he said. "If you're ready to hit and they leave one up, we're going to hit it hard. We got a couple of hits out of that just being aggressive instead of taking pitches. We have a tendency to not do that and it shows up. When we do swing aggressively like we did today, especially at the end, we've got a shot. Put it in play and good things happen."
Falling behind: Free passes and an error helped the Bats build a 4-0 lead in the second inning.With two outs Bisons starter T.J. House hit a batter in the foot. Then he issued a walk. Then Zach Vincej ripped a double down the third-base side to score two runs. An RBI single from Jesse Winker made it 3-0. Then Dwight Smith Jr. went back to play a deep fly from Phillip Ervin, but misplayed the ball. That allowed another run to score and put the Herd in an early 4-0 hole.
Inching back in: The Bisons got on the board in the third thanks to a generous wind to right field that helped a screaming line drive off the bat of Jon Berti get out of the park.
They added another run in the fourth, although the rally could have been extended. With two outs, Raffy Lopez and Jake Elmore hit back-to-back singles. A hit from Shane Opitz to left scored Lopez, but Elmore tried to take third, an ill-advised move as he was caught well before the base to end the inning.
Aggressive base running paid off for Refsnyder in the sixth. He doubled then scored on a single to left from Petit.
Attendance: Another good Friday night crowd at Coca-Cola Field with the announced paid attendance 11,393.
Roster moves: Left-handed pitcher Jeff Beliveau was activated while outfielder Ian Parmley placed on the disabled list.
Up next: The series continues at 7:05 p.m. Saturday with the Bisons scheduled to start righty Nick Tepesch against Louisville lefty Cody Reed. The homestand ends at 1:05 p.m. Sunday.