PAWTUCKET, R.I. – The Buffalo Bisons batted around in a five-run eighth inning and beat Pawtucket, 7-3, in the opener of a four-game series on Friday night before 1,650 fans at McCoy Stadium.
The Herd sent 10 men to the plate in the eighth. They connected for six hits with Kevin Pillar and Nanita Ricardo driving in two runs each. The Bisons added single runs in the fourth and sixth innings.
The Herd trailed, 3-2, after seven innings before breaking the game open.
Bisons starter Liam Hendriks pitched 6.1 strong innings, but did not figure in the decision.
He fanned eight with no walks and gave up three earned runs. He yielded the only home run of the game, a solo shot off the bat of Garin Cecchini.
Bobby Korecky (3-0) got the win in relief, including striking out the side in the eighth. He’s yet to allow an earned run this season. He threw 30 pitches, 19 for strikes. He gave up a leadoff single in the ninth before retiring the next three. Hendriks and Korecky combined for 12 strikeouts.
The Herd’s eight-game road trip continues today with a doubleheader starting at 1 p.m. The Bisons are 4-1 on the road.
In the opener, lefthander Sean Nolin (1-0, 4.22) will oppose Anthony Ranaudo (1-1, 6.14). The game-two starters were not announced. Red Sox outfielder Shane Victorino, recovering from a hamstring injury, is down on a minor league rehabilitation assignment and is expected to start.
The teams split a four-game series at Coca-Cola Field April 10-13.