The Bisons were able to split a double header with Rochester to stay 1.5 games ahead of the Red Wings in the Thruway Cup standings. Rochester took the first matchup by the score of 6-3 and the Herd took the second battle by the score of 7-3 on Saturday at Coca-Cola Field.
The Bisons had early leads in both contests. They gave up their advantage in game one, but kept pouring on to their early lead in the second game.
Rochester showed why they are the second ranked hitting team in the International league after a four-run fifth inning lifted the Red Wings over the Bisons to take the first game of Saturday's doubleheader.
The run producing fifth for Rochester spoiled Brad Glenn's three-run crushing shot in the first. It looked as if the Red Wings figured out Bisons hurler Deck McGuire after the righty kept them hitless till the big inning.
After James Beresford singled in Deibinson Romero, Chris Rahl followed up with a single to left to bring the tying run to the plate. Dan Rohfling tied the ball game with his two-run double to center. Rohlfing scored on Chris Herrmann's double to right to rid Buffalo's lead.
The bottom of the order did more damage for Rochester in the very next inning. Two runs on two hits off McGuire extended the Red Wings lead. Rahl had the drive of the inning when he doubled in Beresford, who singled, and Romero, who reached on error, to give Rochester a 6-3 advantage.
The Herd had the early lead thanks to Glenn. His three-run homerun was the lone scoring for Buffalo in game one. Glenn gave one a ride over the left center wall after Kevin Pillar hit his way on and Dan Johnson walked.
It was a different story for Buffalo in game two. The Herd once again had a three run first, but this time didn't give up the early lead. Pillar doubled to right center to bring in Darin Mastroianni and Anthony Gose after the two led off the game with a single and a walk. Glenn kept his hitting ways in the second game when he plated Pillar from second on a single to right.
After Rochester cut Buffalo's lead to one with an RBI single by Doug Bernier and a solo homer by Josmil Pinto, the Bisons added to its lead in the fourth. The Herd took advantage of Red Wing errors to add two more to the scoreboard. Dan Johnson scored on an error by Chris Colabello after Buffalo loaded the bases with a walk and two singles. Glenn followed Johnson's run by scoring on a wild pitch from Rochester starter Scott Diamond.
Glenn added more to his stellar day when he doubled in the fifth to tag one more on. The former Arizona Wildcat went 4-6 in the twinbill with a double, home run and five RBI. Glenn is currently hitting .377 with the Bisons in 28 games.
"He's swinging the bat very well," manger Gary Allenson said. "He's been a godsend for us because we've been having trouble to score runs."
On the Mound, McGuire was heating up until the fifth. The righty pitched four innings of no-hit baseball until the fifth inning in game one. He retired 12 of 14 batters faced, just issuing two walks over the four innings. McGuire struggled after that, allowing seven hits and six runs in his last two innings of his outing. He departed after 98 pitches for Mike Zagurski who struck out two in his one inning of work.
Raul Valdes shined in game two. The lefty was able to get out of some jams to limit the talented hitting team on the scoreboard. In his five innings, Valdes struck out three, walked one and allowed just two runs off seven hits.
"He's usually a two-inning guy, but for him to go five innings was a plus," Allenson said.
The two will resume action tomorrow when P.J. Walters makes his Bisons debut on the mound against Sean Gilmartin with first pitch at 1:05pm.