Campbell and Davis Make Soup of Renegades in 6-5 Win

by: Patrick Hickey, Jr. | Senior Writer - NY Sports Day | Tuesday, July 1, 2008

BROOKLYN, NY - With Zach Lutz hitting .344 this season and Reese Havens making his pro debut on Monday, Mets eighth round pick Eric Campbell's fate with the Brooklyn Cyclones appeared up in the air.

After going two for thee with a pair of RBI, a walk and run scored, the backup third baseman/designated hitter powered a 6-5 Cyclones win and answered any questions about his dependability.

Above everything else however, he let his teammates know he wants to be in the lineup everyday.

“I felt good at the plate tonight,” said Campbell. “I stuck with my approach and got good pitches to hit. Any chance I get to play, I'm going to take advantage of it.”

With a 1-0 record and 14 K's in one start and one relief appearance before last night's game, Scott Shaw made his first start at Keyspan this season. After a scoreless first, the 6'5 righty got into some trouble, surrendering a monstrous two out, two-run dinger off the bat of catcher John Mollicone, giving the Renegades an early 2-0 lead.

“I felt a little rushed the first two innings; I wasn't relaxed” said Shaw. “Aside from that home run though, I wouldn't take anything else away from my outing. I'm proud of what I did out there.”

On the mound for Hudson Valley was 19-year old starter, Nick Barnese, who was dominant early, striking out eight hitters before finishing the third. Things began to change in the inning for the youngster however, as a Matt Bouchard bunt single opened the door for a Eric Campbell RBI single that made it a one-run game.

The score remained at 2-1 through the fifth, as Shaw settled down and nailed down four K's of his own through five innings pitched. The Cyclones offense started to show some signs of life in the fifth as well.

Brandon Richey set the table with a lead-off double off reliever Thomas Rafferty and the next hitter, Davis, ended up washing the dishes with a double of his own, tying the score at 2-2. However, the Mets Single-A affiliate wasn't done satisfying their offensive hunger, as Campbell notched another RBI single in the inning, putting Brooklyn up 3-2.

“We're starting to feel a little bit more comfortable at the plate,” said Cyclones skipper Edgar Alfonzo. “We have a lot of hits the past four games.”

Chris Schwinden replaced Shaw in the sixth and kept the score at 3-2 through the eighth, until he was replaced by lefty Jimmy Johnson. 3-0 with a 0.00 ERA in five appearances, Johnson wasn't his usual self however, surrendering a Jason Corder RBI double that tied the score with only an inning left to play.

The Mets Single-A affiliate wasted no time getting the lead back however, as Campbell lead off the inning with a walk and was sent home by a Sean Ratliff triple. Zach Lutz, who replaced Josh Satin at second base in the fifth, must have been jealous of his teammate, because he too notched an RBI hit of his own, stretching the Brooklyn lead to 5-3.

Just when it looked like the Baby Mets had the game sewn up, Cyclones closer Yury Santana came out of the Brooklyn pen in the ninth and ended up blowing his first save of the season, giving up a Mark Thomas solo homer and a pair of hits that allowed another run to cross the plate and tie the game.

Showing the resilience of a team together much longer than two weeks, the Mets Single-A affiliate battled back again, as Hudson Valley reliever John Baird walked the bases loaded. With no where left to put the next hitter, Davis, the Mets first round pick smacked an RBI single past Renegades second baseman Michael Rose, giving Brooklyn a 6-5 walk-off win.

“I was trying to lift the ball for a sacrifice fly to stay out of the double play,” said Davis, who, like Campbell, ended up with two RBI on the night. “I got the pitch I wanted to hit, but I didn't do what I wanted with it. I knew it was a base hit though.”

Back at .500 after last night's win, the Cyclones have amassed three consecutive games with 10 or more hits and look to continue to produce offensively during a four-game road trip that will have them away from Keyspan until Saturday.

“Once we get rolling, we're going to be great,” said Campbell. “It's important now for us now to go out and get a win tomorrow and keep going.”

Notes-

Havens went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts and a walk in his pro debut.

“He's a little bit off,” said Alfonzo. “It's normal. It was his first game.”

Lutz came into the game in the fifth, replacing Josh Satin at second base. According to Alfonzo, Satin sprained his right wrist first earlier in the inning.

Brandon Richey replaced Bouchard in the third after he bunted for a hit. According to Alfonzo, Bouchard may have pulled his groin while running out a bunt single.

Their status for tomorrow's game at Hudson Valley is currently unknown.