The Buffalo Bisons returned from the All-Star break and found the same offensive spark that propelled them to second in the International League North standings.
Buffalo beat the Pawtucket Red Sox, 5-4, Thursday night.
The Herd were kept hitless by Pawtucket’s Ryan Weber for over six innings. But Weber and the Red Sox bullpen couldn’t keep it together.
After striking out Bo Bichette to lead off the seventh Weber became wild.
He walked Socrates Brito on four pitches and hit Patrick Kivlehan on the next. Billy McKinney singled on a line drive to right field to end the no-hit bid, but Brito wasn’t able to score.
Richard Urena hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score Brito for the Bisons’ first run of the game.
Weber escaped with a 4-1 lead after seven innings but his bullpen let him down. Travis Lakins replaced Weber and loaded the bases without recording a out.
Resse McGuire singled, Andy Burns walked and Jordan Patterson walked to end Lakins’ night.
Pawtucket brought in Trevor Kelley, who forced Bichette to fly out and Brito into a sacrifice fly, scoring McGuire. Kelley was on track to escape the jam until Kivlehan unloaded on the second pitch he saw, taking Kelley deep to center and giving the Bisons the lead, 5-4.
Kivlehan leads the Bisons with 16 home runs this year.
Jason Adam and Ty Tice shut the door on the Red Sox. Adam and Tice allowed just one baserunner over the final two innings.
Despite losing the majority of its talent to the majors the Bisons have been able to turn a season that seemed over in May into one with playoff aspirations.
Buffalo sits four games back of first in the International league North standings and 3ø games back from a wild-card spot.
The Bisons were 22-29 on May 31 and have gone 25-13 since for a 47-42 record.
The Herd has lost top talents like Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Cavan Biggio, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. to the majors and lone all-star Justin Shafer was called up by Toronto over the break.
The teams resume their four-game series tonight (7:05 p.m., Radio 1520), play Saturday night at 6:15 p.m. and Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m.