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GIBBONS SHINES IN 6-4 WIN OVER STATEN ISLAND

(Photo Courtesy of Robert Pimpsner / Pinstriped Prospects)

STATEN ISLAND, NY – June 21, 2015 – The Cyclones led from wire-to-wire on Sunday afternoon, defeating the Staten Island Yankees by the score of 6-4 at Richmond County Bank Ballpark. Jeff Diehl and Zach Mathieu both had a pair of RBI to pace the Brooklyn bats, while RHP Michael Gibbons (1-0) was sharp on the mound in his Cyclones debut.

Brooklyn wasted no time getting on the scoreboard on Sunday afternoon, as Vinny Siena got the rally started with a two-out walk and later stole second before coming around to score on an RBI double from Michael Bernal. After Mathieu walked, Jeff Diehl reached on a fielding error by Yankees shortstop Thairo Estrada, which allowed Bernal to score and push the Cyclones advantage to 2-0.

After a scoreless second, the Cyclones tacked on another run in the top of the third with Michael Bernal at the center of the rally once again. With one out, Bernal ripped a ball into the right-centerfield gap for a triple and later scored on a RBI groundout from Zach Mathieu, which made it 3-0.

In the fifth the lead would balloon once more, Alfredo Reyes started the threat when he reached on a fielding error by Staten Island third baseman Drew Bridges. Vinny Siena followed with an infield single to put a pair of runner aboard. Bernal grounded out for the second out of the inning, setting up a position in which the Cyclones have excelled in the early going of the 2015 season. With two outs, and Reyes in scoring position, Mathieu lined a single to centerfield to chase Reyes home and Jeff Diehl followed with an RBI single of his own as the Cyclones lead swelled to 5-0. Through three games, the Cyclones are hitting .471 (8-17) with runners in scoring position and two out.

That seemed like it would be more than enough with Michael Gibbons in cruise control on the mound. The righthander allowed just one hit through the first 5.0 innings but ran into trouble in the sixth. On a very hot and sticky day, Gibbons tired a bit when his pitch count reach the 80s, and he issued a lead off walk before Thairo Estrada connected on a one-out double to score Junior Valera and cut the Yankees deficit to 5-1. But the hard throwing right hander rebounded quickly, striking out Drew Bridges, the final batter he would face, for the second out of the inning. Gibbons handed the ball over to Nicco Blank , who surrendered an RBI double to Eduaro de Oleo, before striking out Jhalan Jackson for the final out of the inning with Brooklyn ahead 5-2.

Blank headed to the mound in the seventh, and his struggles with control continued. The righthander walked the first two batters he faced, and uncorked a wild pitch to put a pair of runners in scoring position, before striking out Junior Valera for the first out of the inning. LHP Carlos Valdez was then summoned from the bullpen to record the final two outs of the inning, but not before an RBI groundout and run-scoring single trimmed the Brooklyn lead to 5-4.

But Brooklyn responded courtesy of a big fly off the bat of Jeff Diehl, a solo shot over the left field wall, that gave Brooklyn an insurance run and a 6-4 lead. In the bottom of the eighth, closer Alex Palsha came out the pen to record the final five outs and collect his first save of the year.

The Cyclones return to MCU Park on Monday night to open a six-game homestand with the first of a three-game set against the Tri-City ValleyCats. RHP Matt Blackham will take the mound for his Brooklyn debut. It will be “Brooklyn: The Musical” Night, with pre-game performances from a number of groups as we pay tribute to the neon lights of Broadway. Tickets, which start at just $10, are still available by calling 718-507-TIXX, visiting the MCU Park Box Office, or right here at BrooklynCyclones.com

STATEN ISLAND, NY – June 21, 2015 – The Cyclones led from wire-to-wire on Sunday afternoon, defeating the Staten Island Yankees by the score of 6-4 at Richmond County Bank Ballpark. Jeff Diehl and Zach Mathieu both had a pair of RBI to pace the Brooklyn bats, while RHP Michael Gibbons (1-0) was sharp on the mound in his Cyclones debut.

Brooklyn wasted no time getting on the scoreboard on Sunday afternoon, as Vinny Siena got the rally started with a two-out walk and later stole second before coming around to score on an RBI double from Michael Bernal. After Mathieu walked, Jeff Diehl reached on a fielding error by Yankees shortstop Thairo Estrada, which allowed Bernal to score and push the Cyclones advantage to 2-0.

After a scoreless second, the Cyclones tacked on another run in the top of the third with Michael Bernal at the center of the rally once again. With one out, Bernal ripped a ball into the right-centerfield gap for a triple and later scored on a RBI groundout from Zach Mathieu, which made it 3-0.

In the fifth the lead would balloon once more, Alfredo Reyes started the threat when he reached on a fielding error by Staten Island third baseman Drew Bridges. Vinny Siena followed with an infield single to put a pair of runner aboard. Bernal grounded out for the second out of the inning, setting up a position in which the Cyclones have excelled in the early going of the 2015 season. With two outs, and Reyes in scoring position, Mathieu lined a single to centerfield to chase Reyes home and Jeff Diehl followed with an RBI single of his own as the Cyclones lead swelled to 5-0. Through three games, the Cyclones are hitting .471 (8-17) with runners in scoring position and two out.

That seemed like it would be more than enough with Michael Gibbons in cruise control on the mound. The righthander allowed just one hit through the first 5.0 innings but ran into trouble in the sixth. On a very hot and sticky day, Gibbons tired a bit when his pitch count reach the 80s, and he issued a lead off walk before Thairo Estrada connected on a one-out double to score Junior Valera and cut the Yankees deficit to 5-1. But the hard throwing right hander rebounded quickly, striking out Drew Bridges, the final batter he would face, for the second out of the inning. Gibbons handed the ball over to Nicco Blank , who surrendered an RBI double to Eduaro de Oleo, before striking out Jhalan Jackson for the final out of the inning with Brooklyn ahead 5-2.

Blank headed to the mound in the seventh, and his struggles with control continued. The righthander walked the first two batters he faced, and uncorked a wild pitch to put a pair of runners in scoring position, before striking out Junior Valera for the first out of the inning. LHP Carlos Valdez was then summoned from the bullpen to record the final two outs of the inning, but not before an RBI groundout and run-scoring single trimmed the Brooklyn lead to 5-4.

But Brooklyn responded courtesy of a big fly off the bat of Jeff Diehl, a solo shot over the left field wall, that gave Brooklyn an insurance run and a 6-4 lead. In the bottom of the eighth, closer Alex Palsha came out the pen to record the final five outs and collect his first save of the year.

The Cyclones return to MCU Park on Monday night to open a six-game homestand with the first of a three-game set against the Tri-City ValleyCats. RHP Matt Blackham will take the mound for his Brooklyn debut. It will be “Brooklyn: The Musical” Night, with pre-game performances from a number of groups as we pay tribute to the neon lights of Broadway. Tickets, which start at just $10, are still available by calling 718-507-TIXX, visiting the MCU Park Box Office, or right here at BrooklynCyclones.com



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