The Bisons fell under .500 last night with a rough 11-inning loss. The game was the first of a four-game set against Toledo who earned the win 5-4. There were some positive signs for the offense, but in the end the problem of getting runners in from scoring position continued to haunt them.
Liam Hendriks got the start for the Bisons in his return from Toronto. He pitched a strong game going eight innings, but was hurt by a two out three run home run by Hernan Perez. Hendriks had been throwing his fastball with confidence, but he left one over the plate to Perez, who took advantage of a wind blowing out to left field. The only other run surrendered by Hendriks came on a triple again by Perez, who scored on a sacrifice fly. The triple came on a ball that right fielder Brett Carroll misplayed allowing it to role to the wall.
The offense was led by a pair of rocket home runs. The first of which was a two run shot off the bat of Darin Mastroianni. Mastroianni has now reached base in 33-37 games for the herd including a current six game hit streak. The second was hit by Dan Johnson into the wind that knocked down every other fly ball to right. The problem as that the three, four, five hitters went for a combined 2-15 while the bottom third of the lineup had four hits in the first five innings. Unfortunately due to a few base running blunders only one of these hits led to a run.
Manager Gary Allenson was ejected from the game in top of 11 after the go ahead run scored on a bang bang play at the plate. The replay showed that the tag by A.J. Jimenez did in fact miss, but Allenson was upset over the poor position the ump took. This run proved to be the game winner as Buffalo could not get the tying run across.
The Herd while try and bounce back with recently recalled Radhames Liz on the mound for game two of the series. The other big story for the rest of the series could be the return of Mike Hessman as he is looking to become the International League's all-time home run king.