Brooklyn, NY -- Jun 25, 2017 -- Three things have plagued the 2017 Brooklyn Cyclones: the fifth inning, poor clutch hitting, and defense. On June 26, the latter two were key factors in the Brooklyn’s (2-5) fourth straight defeat, an ugly 8-3 loss to the Hudson Valley Renegades (5-2).
Going into the game, the Renegade offense excelled through six games. They lead the New York Penn-League in batting (.304), slugging (.521) and OPS (.882). In the first two games of the series they strung together 23 hits and 12 runs. Tonight, at least for the seven innings were held to just two runs. Yet, the Cyclones still trailed.
Jose Carlos Medina excelled in his first start of the year. He went 5.2 innings, struck out three and allowed five hits and one unearned run. Most importantly, he held the Renegades to 0-7 with RISP. However, the Cyclone defense did not help him. Brooklyn committed five errors, their season total now sits at 15. “Medina threw a tremendous game today,” Cyclones manager Edgardo Alfonzo said. “He kept us in the game, he doesn’t deserve to get the loss.”
The prevailing moment of the game took place in the bottom of the fifth. Leon Byrd walked for the third straight time, then Fraklin CorreaJose Miguel Medina popped out, and Jose Maria reached on an error. With the bases loaded and a one run lead, both Carlos Sanchez and Carl Stajduhar struck out to end the inning. A half-inning later, the Renegade offense made them pay.
Hudson Valley scraped two runs together and established a lead en route to the series sweep. The Cyclones were 0-8 with RISP at the time, and that was before the game got ugly.
In the top of the eighth, Matt Dacey ripped a triple over the head of Ian Strom and the lead ballooned to 4-1. Then Bill Pujols brought in his third RBI of the season to make it 5-1. With a depleted bullpen, Alfonzo turned to his second baseman — Correa — to pitch. It got worse. Correa hit the next three batters, gave up three runs and the Cyclones trailed by seven.
A poignant offense stalled out over the weekend. After scoring at least four runs in five straight games, the Cyclones strung together just four runs over the final two contests. As the Cyclones usually do, they made the game interesting in the ninth. The first four hitters reached base and the lead was cut to six. Maria grounded into a double play, and Sanchez struck out looking. Putting an end to a winless home-stand.
The 5,742 fans in attendance failed to see the Cyclones first home win of the season. The Cyclones are now 0-4 in the usually friendly confines of MCU Park. After an off day on Tuesday, Brooklyn travels to Aberdeen for a three game set against the IronBirds.
“It was a really tough one today,” Alfonzo said. “We committed five errors and all the errors caused a run. That’s just not good. It’s tough to win a game like that. If everyone does their part, we are going to be alright.”