The Brooklyn Cyclones open their 2012 schedule on Monday, June 18th against the Staten Island Yankees at MCU Park. The squad that will take the field on Opening Day will be one of the youngest in franchise history with an average age of just over 21 years old thanks to a record eight teenagers on the initial roster.
One of those youngsters is Brandon Nimmo, the New York Mets first round selection in the 2011 MLB Draft, out of Cheyenne East High School in Wyoming. The 19-year-old outfielder was selected 13th overall in the draft, becoming the first player from the state of Wyoming selected in the first round of the Major League Baseball draft. Of the nine first round draft picks who have suited up for the Cyclones, the 6-3, 185 pounder is the highest overall selection to take the field in Brooklyn.
Joining Nimmo on the roster, will be the Mets 2012 First Round Supplemental Selection out of Purdue University, Kevin Plawecki. The 35th overall selection in this years draft, the 6-1, 215 pound catcher was named the Big Ten Player of the Year as well as the Big Ten Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player in 2012. In 223 at-bats for the Boilermakers, the Carmel, Indiana native struck out only eight times.
In addition to Plawecki, the Cyclones had 10 additional players selected by the Mets in the 2012 draft, who will make their professional debuts for Brooklyn. Third round pick RHP Matt Koch (University of Louisville), fifth round selection RHP Brandon Welch (Palm Beach CC), ninth round selection INF Richie Rodriguez (Eastern Kentucky University), and 10th round pick RHP Paul Sewald (University of San Diego) rank as the highest selections of this bunch. The team will also have a pair of players from the Ivy League, as Matthew Bowman (Princeton University) and Jeff Reynolds (Harvard University) will begin their careers with the Cyclones. Reynolds, who hit above .300 in each of his four seasons with the Crimson, recently became a YouTube sensation as one of the players featured in the Harvard baseball team’s dance routine to the hit song “Call Me Maybe.”
For one Cyclones hurler, the trip to Brooklyn won’t be that far from home, as Dix Hills, NY native John Mincone returns to the metropolitan area. The former 11th round selection by the Chicago Cubs out of Suffolk County Community College, received the Paul Gibson Award, emblematic of the top high school pitcher in Suffolk County, following his senior season at Half Hills Hollow Hills East.
Rounding out the roster will be seven players with previous experience in Brooklyn including Cole Frenzel, who appeared in 43 games for the Cyclones in 2011, as well as shortstop Philip Evans, a late season call-up last season who is considered one of the top infield prospects in the organization.
The 2012 Cyclones season will get underway on Monday, June 18th at MCU Park when Brooklyn takes on the rival Staten Yankees. Tickets, which start at just $9, are still available and can be purchased by calling 718-507-TIXX, in-person at the MCU Park box office, or online at BrooklynCyclones.com.