ROCHESTER, N.Y. (From Bisons.com)- Now that's a way to make an impression.
Playing his first game in a Bisons uniform, Juan Francisco launched a towering two-run home run in the top of the 13th inning to give his new teammates an 8-6 win over the Red Wings on Sunday afternoon at Frontier Field. The slugger also homered in his first Herd at-bat and drove in four to help Buffalo to a 2-0 start to the 2014 season.
Francisco, who was signed just four days ago by the Blue Jays and activated to the Herd prior to yesterday's postponement, put an end to Sunday's four-hour and 12-minute marathon with a moon-shot home run off Rochester's seventh pitcher of the game, Brooks Raley. After Matt Tuiasosopo singled to lead off the top of the 13th, Francisco launched a 1-2 offering from Raley just inside the right field foul pole for the game-winning hit.
Francisco also homered in his first Bisons at-bat, pulling the Herd even at 1-1 in the second inning. He added a two-out RBI-single in the eighth inning as Buffalo rallied from an early 4-1 deficit.
On the day, Francisco finished his debut 3-6 with four RBI and two runs scored.
The win for Buffalo went to Bobby Korecky, who was extremely solid through four innings of shutout relief. He struck out three batters (all looking) to defeat his former club on their Home Opener for the second straight year.
Neil Wagner nailed down the win with his second save of the season and his 18th in a Bisons uniform.
Each team rallied earlier in the contest to force extras. Buffalo trailed 4-1 before scoring solo runs in the 4th and 5th inning and getting a two-run go-ahead home run from Dan Johnson in the top of the 6th. After Buffalo built a 6-4 advantage, Rochester rallied to tie the game with two runs in the bottom of the 8th on three singles and a pair of walks.
Kyle Drabek got the start of the Bisons and allowed four (three earned) in five innings of work. He allowed a three-run homer from Doug Bernier in the second inning, but settled down to retire 11 of his last 14 batters.
BISONS NOTES:Juan Francisco became the first Bisons player to homer in his first at-bat with the club since OF Brad Glenn accomplished the feat on August 15 of last year against the Red Wings in Buffalo…Mike Nickeas set up one of Buffalo's run with a walk and a stolen base in the 5th inning. The steal was Nickeas's eighth of his career and first at the Triple-A level or higher…Chad Jenkins faced the minimum over two innings of scoreless relief.