Smith Stars in Shutout Finale
Wade Extends IL’s Best Hitting Streak to 18 Games
Buffalo, N.Y. – The SWB RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) battled a pair of rain delays and shut out the host Buffalo Bisons (Toronto Blue Jays) in Sunday’s rain-shortened series finale, 2-0. The RailRiders (41-26) have won eight of their last 10 while the Bisons (34-34) have lost 11 of 14. The game was called one pitch into the eighth inning.
SWB got all the runs it would need in the first frame. Tyler Wade began the game with a single up the middle, extending the IL’s best active hitting streak to 18 games. It tied him with SWB’s Rob Refsnyder and Durham’s Curt Casali for the longest hitting streaks by an IL player all season.
Dustin Fowler then took his place at first base on a fielder’s choice before Donovan Solano doubled to right-center, scoring Fowler from first. After a Mike Ohlman passed ball, Tyler Austin pushed Solano home with a sac fly to center.
Southpaw Caleb Smith (5-0) sizzled, tossing a career-high-tying seven scoreless innings of one-hit ball. He walked two and whiffed seven in the longest outing of his Triple-A career. The lone knock was a leadoff bunt single by Ian Parmley. Thereafter, Smith retired 17 of 18 before Jake Elmore reached on a Wade error and Gregorio Petit walked. With Ohlman, Buffalo’s leader in homers and RBIs, at the plate, Eddy Rodriguez thwarted a double steal with a bullet throw to third base, nailing Elmore to end the inning.
Rehabbing right-hander Glenn Sparkman (0-1) took the loss for Buffalo in his Triple-A debut.
The RailRiders return home on Monday, June 19 with a 7:05 p.m. contest against the Syracuse Chiefs (Washington Nationals). Right-hander Brady Lail (3-2, 5.18) is scheduled to face Syracuse’s Greg Ross (2-2, 4.88). For tickets or more information, please call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
The RailRiders lost their first five meetings with the Bisons, but have won the last five in a row including all four games during this three-day set…SWB posted its IL-best ninth shutout win…The RailRiders improved to 11-2 when Caleb Smith starts…Eddy Rodriguez leads all IL catchers in caught-stealing efficiency at 54% (13 of 24 caught)…The Bisons entered the series with a 24-10 (.706) record at Coca-Cola Field only to suffer their first four-game sweep at home since Gwinnett took all four from July 21-24, 2016…SWB had not swept a four-game series at Buffalo since June 30-July 3, 2016 when the eventual Triple-A National Champions won 15 of their final 16 overall games against the Bisons…The game endured a 42-minute rain delay in the middle of the fourth and another 81-minute delay after a first-pitch ball began the eighth until the game was called…The RailRiders have won a season-high-tying four straight road games.