Last night, in his final start of 2012, Zack Wheeler was solid, closing out a fantastic minor league season, leading the Bisons to a 6-3 win against the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs.
Wheeler rolled, especially early on. Lehigh Valley couldn’t touch him. Although he did struggle with control, he only surrendered two hits. The only “big” hit he gave up was a solo home run in the second after the Bisons scored a run earlier. From then on, Buffalo was in control.
Wheeler was taken out of the game after just five innings of work. The Metss capped his innings, so he finished the season at 149. He gave up just one run on two hits over five innings, striking out five. The only downide was his struggle with command. He thre only 46 of 81 pitches for strikes and walked four batters.
The Bisons had their big inning in the top of the sixth, scoring four runs off Lehigh Valley’s starting pitcher. Thanks to a wild pitch and some timely hitting, Buffalo was able to put together a big rally. The wild pitch scored a run, making it 2-1. Than, Fred Lewis drove in two with an RBI-single that gave Buffalo a 4-1 lead. Jordany Valdespin would cap off the four-run inning with a sacrifice fly that scored Adam Loewen. Buffalo would extend their lead in the eighth when Val Pascucci walked to bring home a run, making it 6-2.
Lehigh Valley tried to fight back, scoring runs off relievers Garrett Olson and Jeff Stevens, but Justin Hampson came in and slammed the door to pick up his fourth save of the season and clinch the 6-3 win for Buffalo. Nice win for the Herd.
Herd Rumblings: Wheeler was solid, but not fantastic. This start can still be considered a positive one. Wheeler finished up this season with a 12-8 record and a 3.27 ERA between Binghamton and Buffalo. He led the organization in strikeouts with 148 and took a big step towards becoming a major league pitcher. What a season for him, he’s just been fantastic. The biggest producer on offense last night was Fred Lewis, who was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Matt den Dekker was 2-for-5 with an RBI. Jenrry Mejia will make his final start of the season at 5:35 later today against Lehigh Valley.