BATTLE OF THE BOROUGHS
Drop Heart Breaker to the Richmond County Bombers. Division Flag Is All But Out of Reach Now.
To open this latest engagement in the Battle of the Boroughs, Cyclones' starter Luis Mateo was given first crack at the Staten Island Yankees. Brooklyn's starter kept the Bombers scoreless through his first six innings of work. He allowed a mere four hits, walked one batter, and struck out five. In the inning prior, his team mates finally staked him to a fifth inning 1-0 lead on consecutive base hits by Eudy Pina and Brandon Nimmo, which set up Kevin Plawecki's two out RBI single.
By the end of the seventh inning, the Cyclones went through two Staten Island pitchers. Yankees' starter, Tim Flight, was gone after pitching three scoreless innings, in which he struck out five batters and surrendered two hits. The Cyclones scored their run off Dietrich Enns who pitched four frames.
During Richmond County's bottom half of the seventh, the Yankees managed only their sixth hit off Luis Mateo, but nothing more. And into the eighth inning they went with James Pazos on the mound for Staten Island. He issued a lead-off walk to Phillip Evans, but was spared the consequences via a 6-4-3 double play.
Luis Mateo did not take the mound for an eighth inning. Although Brooklyn fans in attendance wished he had. Craig Hansen was summoned from the visitor's bullpen to advance the Cyclones' 1-0 lead forward. Instead, he tossed Brooklyn's lead into New York Harbor. Issuing a lead-off walk, then hitting the next batter, was a certain foreshadowing of things to come. Six batters, two more hits, another hit batter, a grand slam home run, and another Cyclones pitcher later, the Yankees were proud owners of a newly minted 5-1 lead entering the ninth inning.
There was no comeback for Brooklyn; not against James Pazos working his second inning of relief. After serving up a lead-off single to Julio Concepcion, the Cyclones went down on a 1-4-3 double play, followed by an unassisted put-out at first base.
Brooklyn's Craig Hansen suffered the double-whammy with a blown save, and a loss. The Cyclones were 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position. They only managed seven scattered hits; all singles.
And well done to Staten Islanders. Over 5,000 fans attended Richmond County Grounds for Friday night's game.
In western New York State, the Cyclones finally caught a break thanks to a little help from the Williamsport Crosscutters, as they defeated the Muckdogs by a 7-4 score in Batavia. That means the Cyclones keep their three game lead over the Muckdogs in the race for the Wild Card spot. Batavia's loss only drops their record to 8-2 over their last ten games. The Cyclones are 4-6 over that span.
In the McNamara Division race, the Cyclones began the evening five games out of first. A five run outburst by Aberdeen in the top of the seventh inning, still couldn't help the Iron Birds defeat the Hudson Valley Renegades. And so, the Cyclones now end their night, six games out of first place.
Twelve games remain in the regular season.