Syracuse took the series finale against Buffalo Monday night 4-2. It was the eleventh win the last fourteen for the Chiefs who are now one of the hottest teams in the league. The loss came on the heels of a minor roster reconstruction for the Herd.
The Bisons were busy all day making several roster moves. The team benefited from the return of Richard Bleier, who was recalled from New Hampshire, and Bobby Korecky who cleared waivers. These moves were necessary as Neil Wagner and John Stilson were placed on the DL, leaving significant holes in the bullpen. Wagner may have the most serious injury as he will make a trip to Florida for rehab and evaluation.
Brad Glenn will join Wagner and Stilson on the DL as he was unable to return to the lineup after getting the past several days off. Brett Carroll was taken off the DL and he along with recently recalled speedster Kenny Wilson will assume Glenn's role.
This is an unfortunate blow for all of the injured players of course, but for the Bisons the biggest loss has been Glenn. He had been hitting .500 in his last ten contests, and since being called up had taken on a huge role in the middle of the lineup. The team has now lost eight of their last ten primarily due to a lack of offense. The issue for Glenn is minor discomfort in his back which fortunately should be remedied in a matter of days. After the game manager Gary Allenson predicted a much needed Friday return for Glenn.
Stilson who has had more command issues of late is making the DL trip due to shoulder discomfort. Allenson reported the move was just to be safe, but shoulder issues are always concerning. The problem started during the team's most recent trip to Indianapolis, but it is unclear when he will be able to return to the mound.
Former Blue Jay and Bison Aaron Laffey took the mound for the Chiefs who were looking to take three of four in the series. Laffey struggled mightily with control walking six in just 5.1 innings, but was able to work out of multiple jams to only allow two runs. The bullpen finished off the game for Laffey only allowing one hit to the struggling Buffalo offense. Kyle Drabek got the start for the Bisons and overall pitched well. Unfortunately he was plagued by the long ball as seemingly every mistake made left the park. All four of the Chiefs' runs came on three bombs given up by Drabek which gives the righty ten homeruns allowed this season. This is a concerning number to be sure.
The Bisons have now fallen back to .500 for the first time since April 23 going into a four game set with Toledo. Allenson after the game was clearly frustrated with the way his offense performed. The opportunities were there, but the team just could not get the two out hits they needed. Allenson seemed to blame a lack of aggression for the draught, but the lack of good hitters in the lineup may be the real problem. Toronto has taken the team's best weapons which is something most minor league teams have to deal with. It may be a while before the Herd return to their early season winning ways.