July 12 at MCU Park
Tyler Badamo failed to make it out of the fifth inning in the Cyclones blow-out loss to the IronBirds.
Aberdeen erased an early deficit with three runs in the third and three more in the fifth as Brooklyn committed five errors in the ugly loss that manager Tom Gamboa chalked up to the rigors of playing everyday.
“They can’t all be good,” he said. “This was an ugly game kind of from the start.”
Entering Sunday’s game, right-handed batters were three-for-36 against Badamo but the baby Birds went three-for-11 against him, knocking in runs with every drive.
Steve Laurino hit a solo homer off Badamo in the second to cut an early Cyclones’ lead to 2–1. Austin Pfeiffer’s double scored a run in the fifth, and Alexander Lee’s two-run single knocked Badamo out of the game.
Aberdeen had taken the lead in the third on a two-run homer by Cedric Mullins that was deposited in the right-field bleachers.
Badamo gave up seven runs (six earned) on eight hits in four-and-two-thirds innings while walking three and striking out six.
Gamboa, known for his salty language, noted that Badamo’s location was off.
“He was in the middle of the plate and they hit the s--- out of the ball,” he said. “There were no cheapies in there.”
Nicco Blank came on in relief and held Aberdeen to two runs (one earned) in three-and-one-third inning, but it took 59 pitches to get 10 outs and Gamboa is concerned with the wildness of the reliever who has walked 10 batters in 11 innings.
“You can’t pitch like that,” he said. “I said ‘You’re making it very difficult for me to pitch you in a game that’s close, because I never know when you’re going to walk people.’ ”
The manager is also making changes in a lineup that has been struggling to score runs. Brandon Brosher, who drove in a run with a double, will bat cleanup today. Branden Kaupe will be at short instead of Alfredo Reyes.
“We’d like to see one of them start hitting,” Gamboa said. “Kaupe’s not hitting either. We’ve got to get some offense out of that position.”
Although Reyes’ defense has improved, he ended the weekend with a .145 batting average and the contempt of his manager.
“He just takes too big a swing at the plate,” said the Clones skipper. “And he’s very stubborn because he just won’t seem to make an adjustment and now it’s really hurting him. I mean .145, it’s less than his weight.”
For the record, Reyes is listed at 160 pounds.
There aren’t a lot of high averages on the team other than Vinny Siena’s .367. Enmanuel Zabala is batting .200 and Oswald Caraballo is at .108 after going hitless in four at-bats.
Gamboa knows for the first-place Cyclones to continue winning, the offense will need to contribute more.
“There’s no possible way to sustain what we’re doing if we don’t start hitting.”
The Cyclones are in action at 11:30 am today in a rare day game at MCU Park. Get there now, go to the game, hit the beach, and then have a hot dog. In that order.