Niagara Gazette — It felt good just to be outside.
After a four straight days of rainouts, the Buffalo Bisons got back to work form as they split a double header Sunday against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
The Herd sent 10 batters to the plate in a six run first inning to pace a 6-1 win in Game One, before dropping the nightcap 12-5 in front of 5,361 fans.
"I really liked the way we did things in the first game but the second game, it's like we came back a totally different team," Bisons manager Marty Brown said of his team's effort.
The Bisons did indeed have a good approach to their at-bats in the opening game
and played solid defense. But Game Two was not as sound.
Bisons catcher Josh Thole (1-for-2/run) gave his team a 2-1 lead in the first inning when he drove a high fastball down the third base line to score Anthony Gose (3-for-4) and Moises Sierra. But the highlight of the inning was Ryan Goins bases clearing double that put Buffalo up 6-1.
"They brought in the lefty (Josh Spence) and I was just trying to get something over the plate
that I could drive," Goins said.
Moises Sierra provided the defensive wow of the day that not only had fans saying wow, it stopped a RailRiders comeback dead in its tracks. SWB loaded the bases in the top of the sixth against Bisons reliever Brad Lincoln. Austin Romine drove a fly ball to right field, David Adams tagged up from third which proved to be poor judgement on his part as Sierra fired the ball home to Josh Thole who applied the tag to get Adams out. Lincoln then struck out Cody Johnson to escape the inning damage free.
It was the second brilliant throw by Sierra this season. Opening Day he gunned down Oswaldo Arcia at third base when Arcia tried
to stretch out a double in the first inning. But Sierra was also dogged by questionable decisions in the field that included cutting off
center fielder Anthony Gose on a fly ball.
Sierra also lost count of how many outs the RailRiders had during the third inning which resulted in him jogging several extra steps after making a catch on a fly ball for what was only out number two.
"That's the thing. 'Mo' has to understand and he's getting better," said Brown. "He plays with a lot of enthusiasm and lot of excitement. He has fun. Sometimes he just get prepared a little better."
Game Two saw the RailRiders send 10 batters to the plate in the fifth as they scored four runs. SWB jumped to 3-0 in the top of the first
and the Bisons responded with a four-run second inning that saw Eugenio Velez stroke a bases clearing triple to right field to tie it up 3-3. Mike McCoy drove Velez home. But SWB would score three in the third inning to retake the lead, 6-4.
Bobby Wilson (four RBI) did the most damage for the RailRiders in Game Two as the Bisons defense
made far too many mental flubs and the Bisons staff fired 216 pitches in the second game.
"The errors and the mistakes that we made we more a lack of concentration than physical," Brown said. "But those lay off days sometimes cause things like that to happen. But there's no excuse for that. We still have to go out there and get prepared and our pitchers have to be aggressive in the zone."
Dave Bush (1-0) notched three strike outs over five innings to earn the win in the opener. SWB starter Dellin Betances (0-1) lasted just two-thirds of an inning, giving up six earned runs on four hits and two walks.
Brett Marshall, who is ranked by Baseball America as the No.6 prospect in the Yankees system, gave up five runs on six hits in 4.1 innings of work. Marshall struck out three, but walked four.
Cody Eppley (1-0) picked up the win in relief for the RailRiders. Mickey Storey (0-1) was tagged for with the loss.
Buffalo's Jim Negrych went a combined 3-for-6 on the day and is now batting .611.
The Bisons begin an eight game road trip with a four-game swing through Syracuse on Monday.
RHP Claudio Varges (0-0, 2.25 ERA) will get the start for Buffalo. Syracuse's starter has not been announced.