The Buffalo Bisons have dropped their record to 5-7 in their last 12 games after falling to the St. Paul Saints 9-1 at the start of their homestand on Tuesday night at Sahlen Field.
St. Paul struck first on a Jose Miranda groundball to centerfield that scored Andrew Stevenson off starting pitcher Casey Lawrence in the top of the first inning, and the score remained that way until Mark Contreras drove home a run in the sixth. Lawrence – who pitched well enough to potentially earn a win – allowed just two runs (one earned) on six hits while striking out three and walking just one batter before being lifted for Hayden Juenger.
Juenger also did a fine job in relief while allowing no hits, runs or walks. Why didn’t he nor Lawrence pick up a win for the Herd? The reasons are twofold – Buffalo’s offense couldn’t produce while getting just two hits going into the seventh, and the Bisons’ bullpen (beyond Juenger and Kyle Johnston) didn’t have their best day at the office.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Bisons started to show some life offensively by picking up a couple of hits and Otto Lopez driving home a run on a base hit to cut their deficit down to one. But that was all the Herd could muster.
Buffalo’s meltdown on the mound began when Brandon Eisert replaced Juenger in the eighth and allowed an RBI triple to Matt Wallner. Hernan Perez increased the lead to 4-1 on a base hit and Eisert was taken out for Jimmy Burnette.
After allowing a base hit and two walks, Burnette gave up a two-RBI single to Miranda. Wallner then promptly smacked a three-run homer to right centerfield to seal the win for St. Paul.