Looking to tie a franchise record for consecutive victories with a win tonight, the Brooklyn Cyclones bats, powered by Dustin
Martin and Joe Holden would pummel the Tri-City Valley Cats bullpen, getting six runs in the fourth inning, leading to a 9-5
Up until recently, playing at home didn’t
exactly feel that way for the Cyclones, as they have proven to be an extremely confident team on the road, going 17-7 in games
played away from Keyspan Park, compared to a sub par 9-10 at home. However, during their current 12-game winning streak, five
of those wins have come in front of the Coney Island faithful; reenergizing the same fans that just a few weeks ago were concerned
the boys from Brooklyn didn’t have the firepower needed to win anymore.
“The crowd [at Keyspan] was just
waiting for something to happen,” said BCR Cyclones play by play announcer Lucky Ngamwajasat. “They were just
waiting for something to cheer for. It’s great now that the bats are alive and now the crowd is terrific.”
While still hitting only .235 as a team,
the Cyclones have been swinging hot bats lately, scoring five or more runs in their past eleven games. Seemingly empowered
by the red-hot hitting of Dustin Martin, who has an amazing .425 on-base percentage to go along with a robust .324 batting
average, Brooklyn’s pitching staff has gotten better as well, lowering its team ERA to 3.00 despite
the loss of bullpen mainstays Joe Smith and Tim Haines.
“I have a good bunch of kids that
are really receptive and want to get better,” said Cyclones pitching coach Hector Berrios. “They’ve been
doing everything we’ve asked of them.”
Tonight Nelson Portillo would get the call
for Brooklyn, trying to replicate the success he had last week, when he earned NY-Penn League pitcher
of the week honors. Unfortunately, Portillo never found his groove, giving up four runs in 2.1 innings before being replaced
by Jeremy Mizell with runners on first and second. Thankfully for the 9,066 fans in attendance, Mizell would then get Valley
Cats designated hitter Jhon Florentino to fly out and end the inning with the Valley Cats up 4-0.
The Cyclones bats wouldn’t awaken
until the fourth, when a Mark Wright single would score Ivan Naccarata, who reached earlier in the inning on a double, cutting
the Valley Cats lead to 4-1. Tim Grogan would add his first of three RBI’s on the night, singling home a run and after
a Joe Holden single with the bases-loaded, Brooklyn was back in the game, tying the score at 4-4 with
With the Keyspan faithful on their side,
screaming louder than they have all season, the Cyclones weren’t finished
putting runs on the board in the fourth. A Dustin Martin RBI triple would send two more runners home, putting the finishing
touches on a five-hit, six-run inning, terrorizing Valley Cats reliever Casey Hudspeth, putting the Mets Single-A affiliate
Despite giving up his first earned run
of the season in the seventh, Mizell would keep the Cyclones in the game and Rip Warren could coast through the eighth. A
Wright sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh would give Brooklyn their two-run lead back and after Grogan doubled in
two more runs, the Valley Cats were forced to score four runs in the last two innings of play in order to come up with a win.
German Marte, a recent importee from Hagerstown,
would make his first appearance at Keyspan this season and would shut the door for Brooklyn in the
ninth, getting the Valley Cats in order, notching his first save as a Cyclone and giving the team a whopping 12-game winning
streak, tying a franchise record.
After starting off their season 0-7, the
Cyclones have somehow found a way to win consistently and now find themselves in first place, riding a 12-game winning streak
with a chance to set a team record with another victory tomorrow.
“We’ve won 12 games in a row;
this is huge,” said Martin. “We’re playing great as a team. We have great team chemistry right now and everyone’s
picking each other up.”