Niagara Gazette — BUFFALO — The Rochester Red Wings showed off their sticks, blasting two home runs in Friday’s matinee at Coca-Cola Field, but it was the Bisons’ Luis Jimenez whose long ball mattered most.
Jimenez, a 30-year-old lefty from Venezuela, took a first-pitch fast ball from Anthony Slama and deposited it over the right field wall into the parking lot along Exchange Street to lift the Herd to a 3-2 win over the Red Wings (0-2).
“I got a very good scouting report from (teammate) Adam Loewen who faced (Slama) before,” Jimenez said. “He said the fastball was going to be sneaky and I tried to be ready for that.”
The home run was the second on the season for Jimenez and his third hit in two games. Bisons (2-0) manager Marty Brown said that he’s glad to have Jimenez on his team after facing him last year when he managed Las Vegas and the first baseman played at Tacoma.
Brown said Jimenez is a nice presence to have in the order behind Moises Sierra and Anthony Gose, and that he’s on a mission to help the team win in any way he can. The skipper also said Jimenez has the best raw power he’s seen since he had former Bisons slugger Russell Branyan.
“I just try to be behind the ball and on time because it’s cool weather, and I’m not usually a good hitter in cold weather,” Jimenez said. “I’m doing very good right now and feeling real good.”
The Jimenez blast may not have been the game-winning home run if not for the stellar effort from the Bisons’ bullpen. Three Buffalo relievers combined for four innings of almost perfect work, allowing only one hit and no runs, while racking up five strikeouts.