Thursday, September 06, 2007

Cyclones One Win Away

I spent last night at KeySpan Park watching the Brooklyn Cyclones take on the Lowell Spinners, who are the Red Sox' team in the New York Penn League. I went with buddy Alex, and as soon as we got into the park, some wiseass ticket-takers began giving us crap. Alex was wearing his Red Sox pullover, and I had on a Red Sox hat. One of them was a Yankee fan (the Cyclones, a Mets affiliate, hires Yankee fans? Not good, guys.) and I left him with just one thought, "7 games." (The lead as of last night.) I could have started in with "2004" but that's like shooting fish in a barrel...
We started out by sitting in the bleachers for the first two innings, and we bumped into Kyle, the fabulous juggler/beer vendor and now a KeySpan legend. There wasn't a big crowd last night (less than 2,000), so we decided to move behind third base.

I bumped into my friend Pat who came to check out the Spinners. Pat's a big Red Sox fan who was also listening to the Red Sox-Blue Jays game from Fenway. (It's amazing at KeySpan. I can get the Red Sox in Boston on the radio and they are over 200 miles away, but I have all kinds of trouble getting the Cyclones games on WKRB, which is a really weak college radio station, inside the ballpark. The Cyclones have to do something about getting on a stronger radio station.)

The game was a pitcher's duel, and Cyclones' Dylan Owen was very impressive, as he struck out 11 and allowed just three hits in seven strong innings. Both teams finally scored a run in the eighth, and something happened in the bottom of the eighth I've never seen before. The Cyclones had first and third and one out, and the batter laid down a safety squeeze. The Spinners' third baseman anticipated it, and grabbed the hard bunt, and tagged the runner out at the plate without flipping the ball to the catcher. An amazing play.

The game stayed tied until Matt Bouchard hit a game-winning homer with one on and two out to give the Cyclones a 3-1 win. The loss officially eliminated the Spinners from any post-season berth, but the Cyclones are now one win away, or Staten Island Yankees loss from winning the McNamara title and getting home-field advantage throughout the NYPL playoffs. They could wrap it up tonight, as they take on the Spinners again. I'll be back again tomorrow night for the regular season finale.

As last night's game progressed, I followed the Red Sox game on my cell for updates. The bullpen let one get away last night, as Manny Delcarmen and Hideki Okajima gave up homers and the Blue Jays won, 5-3. Unfortunately, Okajima has looked very hittable lately, and the innings are taking a toll on him. They need Eric Gagne back and soon. The Sox lead is now at 6. Jason Varitek hit a two-run homer, but the bullpen ultimately let the game get away. And J. D. Drew continues to be a $14 million-per-year big time bust. He came up with the bases loaded in the seventh with one out and a 4-3 lead. A simple fly ball would have added to the lead, but he instead struck out, and heard the boo-birds in force. The Sox didn't score, and Toronto tied it the next inning.

The Red Sox are stuck with this guy for two more years, when they can opt out. When Manny Ramirez returns (hopefully soon), they would be wise to move Jacoby Ellsbury to right and relegate Drew to the bench. He's proving to be one of, if not the worst, Red Sox free agent signing in team history.


Michael Leggett said...

Yankees Fans HIRED By Sterling Mets, LP?

Almost like having a Bloody Transvestite Lumberjack, as a Barber

Michael Leggett said...

To think that one can get WTIC Hartford, but NOT WKRB in Brooklyn for a Game, AMAZES me

Jere said...

And tonight, Drew up, bases loaded, one out. Tie game, late. Double play. We won despite him, though.

Michael Leggett said...

& The Cyclones win it 3-2 over Lowell in 11 Innings:

Put it in the Books!