The Brooklyn Cyclones (4-1) defeated the Aberdeen IronBirds (1-4) in walk-off fashion in front of 8,010 fans at MCU Park on Tuesday night. First baseman Luke Stewart doubled to score right fielder Javier Rodriguez from first, giving the Cyclones a 3-2 victory. Lefthander T.J. Chism (1-0) earned the victory in relief after starting pitcher Marco Camarena yielded two runs in 4.0 innings of work. Aberdeen starting pitcher Aaron Wirsch struck out nine Cyclones, but lasted just 4.0 innings. Lefthander Angel Cespedes (0-1) was tagged with the loss. Rodriguez drove in two of three Brooklyn runs, designated hitter Richard Lucas was 2-for-4 with a double, and second baseman J.B. Brown was 2-for-5 with a run.
The IronBirds drew first blood, leading off the top of the first with a pair of singles to put runners on the corners. With no outs, shortstop Mychal Givens drove in the first run of the game by grounding into a fielder’s choice.
After being held scoreless in the first two frames, the Cyclones fell behind 2-0 in the top of the third. With two outs, second baseman Dudley Leonora bunted for a base hit and then came around to score on a double by Givens. Aberdeen threatened with another run by putting runners on second and third, but Camarena was able to induce a strikeout to end the threat.
Righthander Casey Hauptman took the hill in the fifth inning and tossed 2.0 scoreless innings to prevent Aberdeen from extending their lead. Hauptman needed just seven batters to record six outs. Righthander Tyson Seng then came on to retire the IronBirds in order in the top of the seventh.
In the bottom of the frame, the Cyclones bats awoke to put together a two-out rally, tying the game at 2-2. After back-to-back singles by shortstop Ismael Tijerina and J.B. Brown, Rodriguez doubled down the left field line to drive in both runs.
Seng pitched a scoreless eighth to give the Cyclones an opportunity to head into the ninth inning with a lead. Brooklyn put runners on first and second with one out in the bottom of the eighth, but was unable to plate the go-ahead run.
With the scored still tied, Chism was brought on to pitch the ninth. Chism sat down Aberdeen in order, giving Brooklyn a chance for heroics in the bottom of the ninth.
The Cyclones put the game-winning run on first with a lead-off walk drawn by Tijerina. However, the IronBirds turned a double play on a hard hit ball up the middle by J.B. Brown to erase the threat. With two outs, Rodriguez worked a walk to extend the inning and bring Stewart up to plate. Stewart then hammered the first pitch he saw into the right center field gap to bring Rodriguez around to score and give the Cyclones their third victory in a row.
Brooklyn will take on Aberdeen in the series-finale tomorrow, Wednesday, June 22 at 7 p.m. Righthander Eduardo Aldama (0-0, 4.50) will oppose righthander Parker Bridwell (1-0, 0.00). Tomorrow is Hangover Night and the first 2,500 fans will receive a Luna Park free ride card. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling 718-507-TIXX, at the MCU Park box office, or right here on brooklyncyclones.com.
-by Ryan Gilbert