Cyclones Keep Rolling Along, Sweep Ironbirds
Don’t look now, but Brooklyn has taken full control over the New York-Penn League, after taking three in Aberdeen from the IronBirds. The Cyclones have continued their trend of strong pitching and timely hitting, culminating with a 2-1 win last night that upped their season record to 8-2.
It all started Friday night in the first inning when Michael Bernal smacked a two-run triple off of Aberdeen starter Stephen Tarpley. The Ironbirds tied the game with runs in the first and second, but Bernal’s second RBI triple, followed by a Jeff Diehl single, helped Brooklyn regain the lead, 4-2, in the third. The IronBirds would then score two more off of Cyclone starter Casey Meisner in the fourth to tie the game and two via Justin Viele’s single in the sixth off of relief pitcher Kelly Secrest.
As per usual this season, the Cyclones fought back in late innings. Tyler Moore and Tucker Tharp both provided RBI singles in the eighth to tie the game at 6, before Michael Katz’s sac fly scored Tomas Nido for the eventual winning run in the ninth. Shane Bay pitched a scoreless ninth for the save. Cyclones 7, IronBirds 6.
On Saturday night, all eyes were on the starting pitchers. A terrific matchup of two potential stars was on full display for the Aberdeen faithful. Top Orioles prospect Dylan Bundy made a rehab start against Cyclones standout Marcos Molina, and both showed why they are so coveted by their respective clubs. Bundy held the Cyclones scoreless through five innings, yielding only two hits, while striking out nine and walking only one. Molina was just as dominant, holding the IronBirds scoreless through seven, also yielding only two hits and striking out five.
The two teams played ten straight scoreless innings with only six hits combined. The Cyclones finally busted through in the eleventh off of Stefan Crichton. After Tucker Tharp reached on an error, Joe Tuschak singled and put two on for Tyler Moore. Though Moore inevitably struck out swinging, the pitch eluded IronBirds’ catcher Jonah Heim, allowing Tharp to score the go-ahead run. Brooklyn would then tack on two more runs with Bernal’s single and Jhoan Urena’s RBI squeeze bunt. Shane Bay worked out of trouble in the bottom of the eleventh to record his third save. Cyclones 3, IronBirds 1.
On Sunday, the Cyclones completed the road sweep behind another strong pitching display. Carlos Valdez and Gaither Baumgardner combined on a seven hit, one run performance that suppressed the IronBirds’ offense, helping Brooklyn to a 2-1 victory. Bernal was the offensive star going 2-for-4, including a tie-breaking homerun in the fourth of Augey Bill. Baumgardner’s four scoreless innings gave him his first save of the season. Cyclones 2, IronBirds 1.
Brooklyn will begin a home two-game series against Hudson Valley tonight at MCU Park.
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