by Amy Moritz
The Buffalo Bisons kicked off the 2014 season with a 6-3 win over the Rochester Red Wings at Coca-Cola Field Thursday afternoon.
A crowd of about 8,000 (announced 11,052) watched the Herd take an early lead and hold on for their third straight Opening Day win.
The Herd started their offense with two outs in the first inning. Matt Tuiasosopo singled followed by Dan Johnson drawing a walk. A single from Andy LaRoche scored one and a blooper on the left field line from Chris Getz gave the Bisons the early lead.
After Jared Goedert drew a walk to load the bases, Mike Nickeas singled to drive in two more runs and give the Bisons a 4-0 lead.
The Red Wings got a pair back in the second taking advantage of a leadoff walk and single. With two outs a broken-bat single to shallow right from Darin Mastroianni cut the lead to 4-2.
The Bisons scored in the second when Anthony Gose led off with a double and moved to third on a ground out by Kevin Pillar. Tuiasosopo hit a high popup to third base but the ball was caught in the wind and there was a miscommunication between Rochester’s third baseman and shortstop. The ball dropped and shortstop Danny Santana was charged with an error on the throw home allowing Gose to score.
The lead stretched to 6-2 in the sixth when Gose scored on a two-out single from Tuiasosopo.
Marcus Stroman was solid in his first Triple-A start, giving up two runs on four hits in four innings with a walk, four strikeouts and one hit batter. He had good movement on his pitches and threw in the mid 90s.
Liam Hendricks, who pitched the fifth and sixth innings, picked up the win while Neil Wagner got the save.
The teams will play again at 2:05 Friday at Coca-Cola Field.