Buffalo Bisons manager Terry Collins had to agree that playing in gusty winds isn't so bad after all.
When the Bisons were victimized recently in Oklahoma City by some wind-aided fly bolls that were turned into home runs at All Sports Stadium, Collins complained bitterly.
However, when winds apparently helped the Bisons' three two-run homers which carried the Herd to a 12-8 victory over the Red Sox in Pawtucket's McCoy Stadium Monday night, Collins was the first to comment on the smallness of the park.
"It's a very tiny ballpark. I was here last year but I don't remember the ball carrying as it did tonight. You can really manage like hell when you get three two-run homers," said Collins.
"I thought (Vicente) Palacios pitched pretty well. We can throw some pitchers at you. (Dorn) Taylor, (Mike) York and (Randy) Kramer. But this was a typical slugfest here," said Collins, adding: "Games like this drive you crazy. Palacios was going along smoothly, then all of a sudden, a couple walks, a couple hits and a fly ball blown out of here and this game's still going.
"We just came off a three-game series where we really scuffed to score some runs. You can understand why this stadium leads all in home runs, without question," continued Collins, who learned that Pawtucket tops the Triple-A Alliance with 75 homers, 10 more than the Iowa Cubs.
The Bisons thought they had this one salted away early by erasing Pawtucket's one-run lead (on Jim Pankovits' RBI single).
The Bisons' power exploded for a 6-1 lead on the trio of two-run homers (the season's third each by Moises Alou and Tom Prince) in the second, then another two-run blast (by Mark Ryal, his sixth) in the third.
After the teams traded single runs in the fourth (the Red Sox scoring on Tim Naehring's 11th homer), the Bisons thought they had this one salted away by adding four more runs in the fifth, making it 11-2.
The Herd scoring resulted from a combination of Steve Kiefer's single, doubles by Wes Chamberlin and Prince, two errors and RBI singles by Steve Carter and Orlando Merced.
However, the Red Sox made it interesting by scoring five in the seventh, chasing starter Palacios. Two walks, plus singles by Scott Wade (RBI) and John Flaherty sent Palacios to the showers and brought in Bison newcomer Randy Tomlin. Jeff Stone greeted Tomlin with a two-run double, Pankovits added an RBI single and Scott Cooper's sacrifice fly cut the Herd lead to 11-7.
The Herd made it 12-7 in the eighth when Carter doubled,took third on a fielder's choice, and scored on Ryal's sacrifice fly. Scott Wade's homer in the ninth closed the scoring.
Taylor and Merced made the National League (affiliates) team for the Triple A All-Star Game July 11 at Las Vegas, Nev.
Also tabbed was Collins, who will be a coach for the NL. Taylor is the starting right-hand pitcher, while Merced is the backup first-baseman behind starter Kelvin Torve of Tidewater.