Stevenson lifts Chiefs to walk-off win

Single marks seventh walk-off hit of season for Chiefs

Andrew Stevenson hit a walk-off single in the ninth inning Saturday night (Danny Tripodi)

By JD Raucci / Syracuse Chiefs | September 2, 2017 10:25 PM

An Andrew Stevenson walk-off single in the bottom of the ninth inning led the Syracuse Chiefs to a 2-1 victory over the Buffalo Bisons on Saturday night at NBT Bank Stadium. The game was a pitchers' duel throughout with both starters allowing just an earned run each. For Syracuse, Esmil Rogers allowed just one run on six hits and struck out six in seven strong innings. Meanwhile for Buffalo, Murphy Smith put together a strong outing. The right-hander hurled six innings of one-run baseball, allowing just four hits, and fanning five Chiefs.

Syracuse (54-86) opened the scoring in the bottom of the sixth inning against Smith. With two outs Neftali Soto singled into right field. In the next at-bat, Clint Robinson doubled on a deep fly ball into left-center field, bringing Soto in to score, and giving the Chiefs a 1-0 lead.

Buffalo (64-76) knotted the game in the top of the seventh. Jason Leblebijian led off the frame with a double down the left field line. Two batters later, Shane Opitz tapped a soft line drive over the head of Matt Skole, scoring Leblebijian from second and tying the score at one.

After each team put at least a runner on base in the preceding five half innings, Stevenson delivered the final blow of the game in the bottom of the ninth inning with Wil Browning on the mound. Pedro Severino started with a bloop single into right field. Two batters later, Irving Falu, who pinch-hit for Michael Almanzar, smacked a line drive at Buffalo second baseman Jon Berti. The ball hit off Berti's glove but fell to the ground. Berti still threw Severino out at second, but Falu reached first on the fielder's choice. In the next at-bat, with Rafael Bautista at the plate, Falu stole second base. Bautista then walked on a wild pitch from Browning which allowed Falu to move up to third. One batter later, Stevenson slapped a single between short and third, plating Falu for the game-winning run. The walk-off was Stevenson's second of the season, after hitting a walk-off single in game two of a doubleheader versus Charlotte on May 31st.

The Chiefs and Bisons continue with the third game of a four-game series Sunday night at 7:05 p.m. at NBT Bank Stadium. John Simms is slated to take the mound for Syracuse opposite left-hander T.J. House for Buffalo. 

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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