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Bisons fall to Chiefs, enter All-Star break one game below .500

The Buffalo Bisons entered Sunday’s game with the hope of getting their 41st win of the season and entering the All-Star break at .500. But that hope didn’t translate into success, as the Herd fell 3-0 to the Syracuse Chiefs.

The Bisons had chances Sunday, five to be exact, to put a run on the board or even tie the game. Each time they left a runner in scoring position and missed an opportunity to gain some momentum.

“We got guys on in various ways and I don’t think we swung the (bat) well, I don’t think we had good at-bats,” manager Bobby Meacham said. “We somehow got on base and got into good positions to score but like I said I don’t think the whole day we swung the bats well. You hope that somebody will come through … It felt like we were a little bit off today.”

The Chiefs scored their first run of the game in the second inning and added another one in the third. The Bisons looked as though they would finally score in the eighth inning when Chiefs left fielder Yadiel Hernandez dropped a foul ball. That gave the Herd a big break late in the game as that batter, Reese McGuire, earned a walk to give the Bisons runners at first and second with Triple-A All-Star Jason Leblebijian at-bat. But Leblebijian, who singled earlier in the game, popped out to end the inning.

The Chiefs added their last run of the game in the ninth off of a double from Bengie Gonzalez. Chris Rowley started the game on the mound for the Bisons, pitching six innings and allowing seven hits and two runs. Matt Tracy, Murphy Smith, Craig Breslow and Zach Stewart all saw time as relievers.

Meacham said the break will give the players not only a physical break but also a much needed mental break.

“I’m glad we have a break, I was pumped to get to .500 record but we are a little bit below where we want to be," he said. "I’m excited about getting a break and those guys coming back and hopefully like we’ve been talking about it’s a new day and hopefully, they will feel a little bit more like that with a few days off.”

Noteworthy: Roemon Fields had his 17th and 18th stolen base of the season. He is the fourth Bisons player to steal two bases in one game this season, joining Teoscar Hernandez, Dalton Pompey and Tim Lopes.

Points of interest: The Bisons enter the All-Star break in third place in the International League North, 2.5 games behind Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and eight games behind Lehigh Valley.

Next: The Bisons will have three days off as Triple-A baseball breaks for the All-Star game, where third baseman Leblebijian and catcher Danny Jansen will both represent the Herd for the International League against the Pacific League's all-stars. Game time is 7 p.m. Wednesday from Huntington Park in Columbus. The Bisons open a four-game series against Lehigh Valley at 7:05 p.m. Thursday at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, Pa.

Story topics: baseball / bisons