Staten Island Yankees 5
Aug. 25 at Richmond County Bank Ballpark
The spectacular eighth inning collapse of the Cyclones bullpen led to a horrific loss at the hands of Brooklyn’s hated cross-Narrows rivals the Staten Island Yankees.
The humiliating defeat followed a phenomenal showing by Mini-Mets ace Luis Mateo. The towering Dominican hurler kept the Baby Bombers off the board for seven innings, surrendering just five hits and one walk while fanning six batters.
The Clones, meanwhile, took a one-run lead in the fifth after Yanks reliever Dietrich Enns ends gave up back-to-back singles to right fielder Eudy Pina and center fielder Brandon Nimmo. After first baseman Dimas Ponce failed to reach base or advance the runners, shortstop Phillip Evans moved them into scoring position with a ground-out. A ground ball single to the hot corner by designated hitter Kevin Plawecki let Pina score.
But it all fell apart in the eighth frame, when Coney skipper Rich Donnelly sent in reliever Craig Hansen to replace Mateo. Hansen immediately pitched himself into a jam by walking Staten Island catcher Isaias Tejeda, plunking left fielder Taylor Dugas, and yielding a single to designated hitter Exicardo Cayones. Hansen then drove in a run by hitting center fielder Ravel Santana, evening the score with none away. It was enough for Donnelly to pull Hansen for Beck Wheeler. But Wheeler only made things worse, promptly giving up a grand slam to third baseman Matthew Duran.
The Cyclones dropped to six games behind the Hudson Valley Renegades with 11 games left in the race for the McNamara division crown. They remain just three games ahead of the Batavia Muckdogs in the wild card race.
The Yankees have already been eliminated from playoff contention.
The Cyclones are home again at MCU Park [1904 Surf Ave. at W. 17th Street in Coney Island, (718) 449–8497, www.brooklyncyclones.com] tonight at 6 pm as they take on the hated Staten Island Yankees.
Reach reporter Eli Rosenberg at [email protected] or by calling (718) 260-2531. And follow him at twitter.com/emrosenberg.