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NOTEBOOK: Veteran White getting hot at the plate

Kevin Smith and Riley Adams add pop to the middle of the Bisons lineup.
Tyler White is hitting .316 so far in June. (Mike Sabo)
June 8, 2021

Veteran first baseman Tyler White has been a big part of the club’s recent offensive surge. White found his groove at the plate this past week, batting 6-for-12 in the last three games of the team's series with Syracuse, adding three runs batted in an extra-base hit. White started the

Veteran first baseman Tyler White has been a big part of the club’s recent offensive surge. White found his groove at the plate this past week, batting 6-for-12 in the last three games of the team's series with Syracuse, adding three runs batted in an extra-base hit.

White started the season out hot, batting .344 after the first two series. Baseball is a game of streaks though and the veteran found himself in a slump when the team went on the road for the next two weeks. White appears to be rebounding from that slump, batting .316 in the month of June.

Another big part of the Bisons’ showcase of power has been Riley Adams and Kevin Smith. The two young batters have been a staple in the club’s lineup, batting 3rd and 4th often, and for a good reason. The two are tied for the club lead in home runs with 6 apiece throughout the first month of the season.

Adams, who struggled a bit to start the season, batted 5-for-12 in the series against Syracuse, adding a home run, a double, and four runs batted in. The power-hitting catcher has appeared to have found his stroke at the plate.

Smith also appears to be playing great baseball at the right time, leading the Herd in runs batted in (19), and he’s tied for the club lead in doubles (7) with White. The young prospect continued the trend at the plate against Syracuse, batting 7-for-20, good for a .350 series batting average. Smith also had a double, a home run, and three runs batted in during the series.

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White, Adams, and Smith will look to build off of their hot end to the series as the team takes on the RailRiders but getting healthy would also benefit this Bisons’ team a lot.

Breyvic Valera, who has been one of the most consistent players for the Herd at the plate, went down on Wednesday night after being hit in the face with a fastball. It was an unintentional act by the opposing pitcher who showed remorse and luckily for Valera, he had no broken bones or a concussion.

Valera was placed on the 7-day injured list and Bisons’ manager Casey Candaele offered an injury report for the veteran. “He’s healing up well, still pretty swollen, but he’s feeling better every day.”

Forrest Wall left Sunday afternoon’s game after also being injured at the plate. Wall injured his oblique while swinging at a pitch in the 7th inning. When asked about the injury Casey Candaele stated, “We hope it's just a cramp, but we will evaluate him tomorrow.”

Getting Wall and Valera back in the lineup would be big for the Bisons. Wall in particular is coming off a great series against Syracuse, where he batted 7-for-18 with a double and four stolen bases.

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The Bisons have a tough upcoming series against the division-leading Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. The two teams met just two weeks ago when the Herd traveled to Scranton Wilkes-Barre, only to get four games in for the series due to inclement weather.

The RailRiders took the series, winning three of the four games played, and continue to lead the division in runs scored (154) while hitting the second-most home runs (38) behind only the Worcester Red Sox (40).

The RailRiders’ showcased that power against the visiting Bisons, winning two games in which the rival club had less than five hits. In total, the RailRiders scored just twelve runs across the four games played that week but had 12 extra-base hits.

In addition to their power at the plate, the RailRiders are also very solid in the field, which makes them a difficult club to beat. They rank second in the division for runs against, 114, only behind the Herd who lead the division with only 98 runs against. The rival held the Bisons to just 11 runs through four games.

The Herd will look to regain some ground in the division race this week as the RailRiders travel to Trenton. This couldn’t be better timing for the Bisons as they showcased some power of their own at the plate in the final games of their series against the visiting Syracuse Mets.