Wings Blow Late Lead In Buffalo


It didn't look pretty, but Jonathan Diaz's patient at bat won the series opener over Rochester to start Buffalo's eight-game homestand.

Diaz's walk with the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth gave the Herd its third straight win Friday night at Coca-Cola Field by the score of 5-3.

Andy LaRoche walked, Ryan Goins hit his way on with a single to left and Hector Gimenez also walked to load up the bases for Diaz. Diaz fought and stood alive in the count against Red Wings pitcher Ryan Pressly. With a full count, Pressly delivered a pitch low and inside that Diaz did not bite on to bring in the winning run.

Diaz did some damage in the seventh as well. After getting robbed of a base hit in the second that would have brought in two runs for Buffalo, Diaz touched them all with a three-run homer to tie the ball game at three. Diaz followed up Andy LaRoche's and Hector Gimenez's singles to left with a souvenir shot that just barely got over the left field wall. "In baseball, if you keep stressing on what's happening before, you won't focus on what's happening now," Diaz said on the robbed hit in the second. "I just tried to focus on that at bat and luckily things worked out."

Aaron Sanchez had an ok night to rebound from his Triple-A debut in Toledo. In his five innings of work, Sanchez allowed four hits and three runs (two earned) in his Coca-Cola Field debut. The 21-year old walked and fanned four batters in his no decision.

"Obviously it's a step in the right direction," Sanchez said comparing his first start to Friday nights outing. "It's just abut execution over anything."

"He was a lot better today," manager Gary Allenson said. "He was much better down in the zone, showed really good composure and has electric stuff. That's a pretty good hitting club and I thought he did a pretty good job."

The righty showed signs of progression in his outing on Friday night. He displayed ability to come back with a good pitch and to get batters out after making rookie mistakes. After a lead off walk to Josmil Pinto, Sanchez struck out Chris Colabello then forced Daniel Ortiz into a 6-4-3 double play in the fourth.

Aaron Sanchez's biggest mistake came in the second. Rochester took the early lead with Colabello's second homer of the year. Colabello followed up a Josmil Pinto walk with a crushing two-run shot over the right center wall. The first baseman got a hold of a 94 mph fastball over the center of the plate to open the scoring.

After giving up the two-run shot to Colabello, Sanchez followed up by throwing out Ortiz at first and striking out Wilkin Ramirez after falling behind 3-0 in the count.

"Being only 21, he still needs that development time." Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos said, after being in attendance on Friday night. "Being up in this Triple-A environment, the fact that he can hold his own, still strike guys out and show you tremendous stuff is great for him."

The Herd will battle in a double header with the Rochester Redwings tomorrow with first pitch at 5:30pm.

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