Tigers maul Clones

Cyclones hurler Luis Mateo struck out nine in five and two-thirds innings on the mound.

Connecticut Tigers 11
Cyclones 3

Aug. 2 at MCU Park

The Connecticut Tigers clobbered the Mini-Mets’ pitching staff in a horrendous loss at home.

Brooklyn started the game strong, scoring a run in the first inning on an RBI double off the bat of catcher Kevin Plawecki. But things turned sour for the team in the next frame, as starter Luis Mateo gave up a double to Connecticut second baseman Devon Travis and back-to-back singles to designated hitter Zach Kirksey and catcher Bennett Pickar to tie the game. Mateo allowed another run in the third after Travis knocked in a run on a base hit.

And it only got worse for the Clones. The Tigers tacked three more runs on the board in the fifth after Mateo loaded the bases by giving up back-to-back-to-back singles, then surrendered a triple to Kirksey.

The Clones managed to scrape up another run in the sixth, as left fielder Stefan Sabol hit a double off Tigers reliever Efrain Nieves and moved to third on a single from third baseman Alexander Sanchez. Second baseman Jeff Reynolds then batted into a 5–4–3 double play, but it let Sabol touch the plate.

But the Tigers came back even stronger in the next inning, racking up four more runs — thanks largely to a pair of errors at the hot corner by Sanchez. With one away and runners on second and third, Pickar hit a soft grounder to third off of Brooklyn reliever Ernesto Yanez. But Sanchez misplayed it, allowing Smith and Hanover to score. Connecticut first baseman Edgar Corcino then tripled to drive in Pickar. Cyclones skipper Rich Donnelly yanked Yanez for reliever Timothy Peterson after the hurler grazed the hands of shortstop Jared Reaves. That’s when Connecticut center fielder Jake Stewart chopped a grounder to Sanchez, who committed another fielding error that let Corcino score.

The Tigers padded their lead in the eighth, when Travis and Hanover both crushed first-pitch home runs over the left field wall. Clones center fielder Brandon Nimmo knocked in his 25 RBI of the season in the bottom half of the frame, but Brooklyn had nothing left in the tank. The team now trails the Hudson Valley Renegades by three games for the top spot in the McNamara Division of the NY-Penn League.

The Cyclones are now 10–11 at home, compared to 16–7 on the road.

The Cyclones are home again at MCU Park [1904 Surf Ave. at W. 17th Street in Coney Island, (718) 449–8497, www.brooklyncyclones.com] on tonight at 7 pm as they take on the Connecticut Tigers.

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