Syracuse- (Bisons.com) The Bisons saw the first half of the season and their four-game win streak come to an end on Sunday in a 3-2 defeat at the hands of the Yankees from Alliance Bank Stadium in Syracuse.
The Bisons couldn't solve the sinker of Sergio Mitre as they pounded groundball after groundball to Yankee infielders. Mitre needed only 82 pitches, 64 for strikes and got 15 groundball outs in eight efficient innings to pick up his third win of the year for Scranton.
The Herd had their chances early against Mitre too, putting the lead off runner on in four of the first five innings and leaving a runner in scoring position in four of the first five innings as well. Two double plays erased scoring threats in the second and third innings.
But the 28-year-old Mitre, hit his stride late, retiring his final 12 batters in a row and 15 of his last 16.
After both teams threatened to score in each of the first four innings, the Yankees broke through for two runs in the fifth frame against Bisons starter Ken Takahashi. An Austin Jackson double and Mike Lamb error plated the runs and gave Scranton a 2-0 lead.
A Doug Bernier RBI single in the sixth, seemed like icing on the cake the way Mitre was throwing, but the insurance run would loom large in the end.
The Bisons mounted a furious, two-out rally in the ninth inning against reliever Edwar Ramirez. The Bisons had the tying run in scoring position and the winning run at the plate after back-to-back doubles by Emil Brown and Mike Lamb, and an RBI single by Angel Berroa. With Nick Evans at the plate a wild pitch by Ramirez moved Berroa, the tying run, into scoring position. But Evans lifted a 3-2 pitch to left field that was corralled by Colin Curtis and sent the Bisons in to the break with a loss.
Takahashi making only his second start of the season for the Herd, left runners in scoring position in each of the first three innings, including a bases-loaded jam in the first. After a 1-2-3 fourth inning it seemed Takahashi had settled into a groove but two doubles in the fifth frame combined with the error led to two runs.
Takahashi went five innings, threw 89 pitches, 52 strikes, and allowed just one earned run on four hits giving the Bisons a chance to win.
Adam Bostick struck out four in two scoreless innings of relief for the Bisons.
This weekend's two-game set against the Yankees was played in Syracuse because of drainage issues at PNC Field in Scranton. There was a paid attendance of 5,107.
The Bisons are back in Buffalo on Thursday, July 16 to face the Toledo Mud Hens from Coca-Coal Field. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m
Javier Castillo extended his hit streak to 16 games with a base hit in the fourth inning... The Bisons will send RHP Nelson Figueroa and Manager Ken Oberkfell to Wednesday's All-Star game in Portland, OR. Figueroa leads the Bisons with five wins and 11 quality starts on the year and is fifth IL with a 2.50 ERA.