BUFFALO, NY – The SWB RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) fell to the host Buffalo Bisons (Toronto Blue Jays) on a chilly Monday evening, 5-3. The RailRiders (12-13) have lost nine of their last 13 while Bisons (11-13) have won four of the clubs’ five meetings on the young year.
The damage came from unexpected sources. Buffalo’s bottom four hitters entered the game hitting .163, .172, .196 and .158. The foursome went a combined 4-for-12 with three run-scoring extra-base hits, three walks and two runs scored.
Buffalo got on the board in the second when Junior Lake, the six-hole hitter, worked a one-out walk. A.J. Jimenez and former RailRider/New York Yankee David Adams followed with an RBI triple and RBI double respectively. An inning later, Andy Burns hit a leadoff double and later scored on a two-out fielding error by Pete Kozma.
SWB found the scoreboard in the fifth when Donovan Solano and Aaron Judge smacked back-to-back doubles off starter Wade LeBlanc. In the sixth,Rob Refsnyder hammered a double to left-center and two batters later came around thanks to Eddy Rodriguez’s second home run of the year for a 3-3 draw that prompted a pitching change.
Dustin Antolin relieved LeBlanc and retired the first seven he faced before issuing consecutive walks to Cesar Puello and Rodriguez with two outs in the eighth. Rodriguez’s walk came with a pitch-timer violation was called upon Antolin with a 3-2 count.
The Bisons summoned former RailRider and switch-pitcher Pat Venditte out of the bullpen, whom got a fly-out to deep center from Kozma to end the threat.
Buffalo began the eighth with a walk by SWB/NYY alumnus Jesus Montero and a single by Casey Kotchman against reliever Dan Camarena. Alexi Casilla entered to pinch run for Montero and Tyler Webb entered out of the bullpen. Lake grounded out to third, but advanced the runners. Jimenez delivered a sac fly and Adams bashed a first-pitch double to left for the 5-3 score that would go final.
Venditte (1-0) got the win while Camarena (0-1) suffered the loss.
The three-game series continues at 6:05 p.m. on Tuesday. SWB is scheduled to toss Chad Green (0-3, 1.44) against fellow right-hander Roberto Hernandez (0-0, 0.00).
The RailRiders return home for a nine-game homestand on Saturday, May 7. It starts with a two-game renewal of the IronRail Series against the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Philadelphia Phillies). The first 1,000 kids in attendance will receive a CHAMP bank courtesy of the Times Leader. It will also be Fit Track Day, a community outreach initiative that helps promote physical activity, healthy eating choices and a good night’s rest for kids. Participating children from area schools will be recognized on the field for their Fit Track efforts. For tickets or more information, please call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
Eddy Rodriguez’s second home run of the season was also his second in as many games played. He went deep off of Rochester’s Taylor Rogers in game two of Friday’s doubleheader at Frontier Field. Rodriguez finished Monday’s game 2-for-3 with a walk.
Donovan Solano went 2-for-5 with a double and a run scored.
Rob Refsnyder’s sixth-inning double was his third extra-base hit of the year and his first since April 12 at Pawtucket. Refsnyder finished the game 2-for-4 with a run scored. He has hit safely in seven straight including a 7-for-18 (.389) performance on the road trip with five runs scored.
Before the game, the New York Yankees announced that infielder Deibinson Romero had been activated off of the SWB disabled list and utility man Jose Rosario was sent to Double-A Trenton.
Buffalo pitching coach Bob Stanley was ejected by home-plate umpire Chris Segal in the eighth inning.