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Bisons make return to Scranton

SWB pic 1
SWB pic II

By Mike Harrington

MOOSIC, Pa. -- The Bisons are back at PNC Field tonight for the first time since Sept. 5, 2011 but it's not the same place they made regular visits to during their stints in both the Triple-A Alliance and the International League.

The home of the newly-christened Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders was completely reconstructed during the last year (Remember, the then-SWB Yankees played the whole year on the road!) and it's quite an improvement for both specators and players. There's a 360-degree open concourse, grass berm in the outfield, party areas, HD video boards and a club level complete with buffet restaurant.

The huge concrete cavern of an upper deck is gone. The place seats about 7,200 with room for another couple thousand in the outfield. It's intimate and scenic, on the base of Montage Mountain. It's about a 4-hour drive from Buffalo and worth the trip. Be sure to look for a big look at the park next week in The News.

As for tonight's game, it's the opener of a four-game series and an eight-game road trip. Claudio Vargas (4-5) is on the mound for the Bisons. Jim Negrych is again starting at third base, trying to increase his versatility. The RailRiders are averaging 5,162 a game in their new home but are only 11-17 so we'll see what impact the park has as the summer moves along.

The lineups:

Gose, cf
Goins, ss
Gomez, 1b
Jimenez, dh
Sierra, rf
Negrych, 3b
Nanita, lf
McCoy, 2b
Nickeas, c
Vargas, p

Ibarra, 2b
Almonte, lf
Mesa, cf
Bell, dh
Johnson, 1b
Mustelier, 3b
Neal, rf
Wilson, c
Gonzalez, ss
Marshall, p


Bisons | International League | Yankees
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About Inside Pitch

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has covered the Buffalo Bisons since 1992 and Major League Baseball since 1995. A member of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, Harrington has reported on more than 30 MLB postseason series — including every game of the World Series in this century — and all three of the Bisons' championship runs in their modern era. He is a connoisseur of the famous Stadium Mustard at Cleveland's Progressive Field.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered the Bisons for The Buffalo News since 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |