Brooklyn, NY– July 9, 2017 – In the bottom of the fifth inning the Brooklyn Cyclones exhibited a quality not seen so far this season: resilience. Leon Byrd notched his team-leading 13th walk of the year and Matt Winaker pulled a ball into right field. After the usually-clutch Reed Gamache popped out, Quinn Brodey stepped to the plate.
The third-round draft pick knew he had to atone for his error that occurred in the previous half-inning. His misplayed pop-up allowed the Yankees to tie the game at four. With a 3-1 count, Brodey split the outfielders with towering double in left-center field. Both runs scored and the Cyclones regained a lead they would not relinquish.
Brodey’s AB was the seminal moment in the Cyclones’ (6-14) 6-4 win over the Staten Island Yankees (15-4). The victory marked the first time the Cyclones did not lose a series at home. This weekend, a four-game set that featured a Saturday double-header, the Cyclones settled for a tie.
“I don’t we had much damage (on the error),” manager Edgardo Alfonzo said. “To keep the game close, it was nice.”
The scoring began in the third inning in a big way. Three straight singles — the first knocked into left, the second pushed to right as part of a hit-and-run, the third muscled up the middle — gave the Cyclones a 1-0 lead. Edgardo Alfonzo’s aggressiveness paid off and Franklin Correa delivered the hit with RISP.
Leon Byrd then thwacked a ball up the middle, scored Scott Manea, and dove into second for a double. One batter later, Reed Gamache pulled a ball down the third base line for a double. Two more runs scored, and the Cyclones led 4-0.
The Cyclones nearly gave the lead back in the fourth inning. After a quick pop out, Brooklyn allowed two walks and a single to load the bases. The Yankees got on the board after Cesar Diaz knocked in an RBI single. Oswaldo Cabrera hit a towering shot to left and Quinn Brodey, who was wearing sunglasses, lost the ball in the sun. The error allowed Manny Argomaniz to score and the Cyclone lead was cut in half. Darwin Ramos escaped the jam with two groundballs and Brooklyn.
In the fifth inning, Brooklyn was in another self-inflicted jam. This time, Staten Island capitalized. After two straight errors — one by Debora and the other by right fielder Jose Miguel Medina — the Yankees had runners on first and second with one out. Argomaniz stared at strike three and the Cyclones were on the brink of alluding another Yankee threat.
Ricardo Cespedes charged at a shallow fly ball in center field to no avail. Ryan Krill’s shallow hit turned into a two-RBI triple and the Cyclones seceded the lead in the ever-dreadful fifth inning.
The seventh inning started harmlessly. Ramos struck out Kendall Coleman for the second time and was one out closer to victory. However, two straight walks forced Alfonzo to turn to his bullpen and the lights-out reliever Trey Cobb.
A 2017-draftee, Cobb had yet to allow a run over four innings. It took him four pitches to strike out Argomaniz and he caught a break when Dalton Blaser ran the Yankees out of the inning. Another threat averted, a win that much closer.
“The more I see the more I like,” Alfonzo said. “He knows what he’s doing on the mound. It’s important for a guy like that to come out of the pen.”
As Brooklyn fans are accustomed to seeing, Cobb dealt a spotless 1-2-3 eighth. In the ninth, Cobb remained in the dugout and Alfonzo turned to Keaton Aldridge to navigate the heart of the Yankee lineup. A strikeout, a grounder, and a second strikeout sealed the win and the Cyclones outlasted their cross-town rival.
“The lineup we have,” Alfonzo said. “They know what to do. When we play together we do the little things and it’s going to be great. From the leadoff guy to the last guy.”
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