It was another late-inning rally by the Buffalo Bisons but the Herd came up short in a 2-1 loss to the Rochester Red Wings at Coca-Cola Field Friday night.
Trailing, 2-0, in the eighth the Bisons got on the board when Jio Mier's one-out double to the gap in left center field scored Humberto Quintero from first. But Dalton Pompey and Alexi Casilla both grounded out to second to end the rally. In the ninth, Casey Kotchman drew a two-out walk but Junior Lake grounded out to short to end the game.
Mixed first inning: The good news for Bisons starter Wade LeBlanc: He struck out three batters in the first inning. The bad news: He gave up a two-out, 3-2 home run to Jorge Polanco as Rochester took a 1-0 lead.
Insurance run: With two outs and runners on second and third Wilfredo Tovar made contact with the pitch and the ball bounced toward third base. It was too slow for Matt Dominguez to field the ball to first for the force, so he let the ball go, hoping it would bounce foul. Instead, it bounced off the base into fair territory. It goes down as a base hit and RBI as Rochester took a 2-0 lead.
Big catch: Andy Burns had a great catch in left field, rushing in, diving forward and robbing Kennys Vargas of a hit in the fourth inning. Pompey had a sliding catch in the eighth on Polanco.
Unfriendly confines: Former Buffalo Bison Darin Mastroianni did not have a good return to Coca-Cola Field. In the two-game series the outfielder combined to go 1 for 8 with seven strikeouts.
Tallest player: The Bisons faced reliever Loek van Mil in the seventh and eighth innings who is the tallest player in baseball at 7 -foot-1. He gave up one hit and was tagged for the Bisons' run.
Jackie Robinson Day: There wasn't a field full of No. 42s on the field Friday, like in the Major Leagues, but the Buffalo Bisons did honor Jackie Robinson by hanging No. 42 with the other retired numbers in left field. For Bisons outfielder Dalton Pompey, the day continues to resonate.
"I feel like any person of color in baseball would say it does because we wouldn’t be playing this game or having this opportunity if it wasn’t for him breaking that barrier," Pompey said. "He happened to be that first one so you have to give credit where credit is due. He gives all of us an opportunity play and we should all be thankful for it."
As for the current level of diversity in baseball, Pompey noted it's about "the American players to the Latin players and then the International players as well. I think that’s where it’s more diverse instead of just overall skin color. I feel like that doesn’t really exist any more. I feel it’s more about the different countries that are involved in the game. I feel that’s what makes the game great."
Counting the house: 6,503 at Coca-Cola Field
Up next: The Bisons welcome Pawtucket to Buffalo for the first time this season for a two-game series. The Herd is scheduled to start righty Casey Lawrence (0-1, 9.00) while the PawSox will start lefty Brian Johnson (0-1, 2.25).