Voyles Cashes in as Cyclones Slip and Slide to a 9-7 Win
by: Patrick Hickey, Jr. | Senior Writer - NY Sports Day | Thursday, June 28, 2007

BROOKLYN, NY - Looking for the series sweep against the Ironbirds, the Cyclones, powered by a four-RBI night from JR Voyles and some help from mother nature, managed to come back from an early deficit before almost blowing it themselves, barely squeaking by Aberdeen 9-7.

Striking out 10 in his first start of the season on June 22 against the Hudson Valley Renegades, Cyclones starter Nick Carr gave up two runs in the second on two hits and a walk, giving Aberdeen an early 2-0 lead.

“I felt good today, but I missed up a few times and they made me pay for it,” said Carr. “I was struggling to keep the ball down today, but I worked through it.”

The Mets single-A affiliate would strike back in the next inning however, as a Micah Schilling walk with the bases loaded would bring home one run and a JR Voyles double would clear the bases, putting the Cyclones ahead 4-2.

“He’s so important to this team,” said Cyclones manager Edgar Alfonzo of Voyles. “I knew in extended spring training that he was something special and now he’s proving it. He’s been the MVP of this team over the first eight games. He has the team on his shoulders.”

Things managed to slow down a bit offensively until the fourth, when a Schilling sac-fly would put Brooklyn up by three runs and after extra-base hits by the “Vicious V’s,” Voyles and Vogl, the Cyclones found themselves up 7-2. However, the Ironbirds would then muster up some offense of their own, as Franklin Gonzalez would stroke a solo bomb over the left field wall, trimming the Mets single-A affiliate’s lead to four.

“It feels good to have an important role on the team,” said Voyles, who after tonight’s game is leading the NY-Penn League in RBI with 13 after not even being on the team’s opening day lineup. “Eventually, everyone is going to get hot. Good hitting is contagious.”

Steve Cheney would come out of the Brooklyn bullpen in the sixth after Carr gave up three runs on five hits in five innings of work and would almost single handedly allow Aberdeen back into the game, giving up two walks and two hits, including a bases-loaded triple from Joshua Wolfe that cut the Cyclones lead to 7-6.

“Cheney struggled a bit,” said Alfonzo. “He was out of his rhythm and he kept his pitches up in the zone and got hurt.”

Cheney would then get the first two outs of the inning before being replaced by Josh Appell, who had yet to give up a run in his two appearances this season. After getting Joe Nowicki out on strikes, Appell would continue to pitch in the eighth and would give up a game tying solo-dinger to Tyler Henson, tying the score at seven runs apiece.

Showing the grit and patience of a championship team, the Cyclones got two runners in scoring position for Voyles, but this time the Brooklyn slugger didn’t have to use his bat, as a wild pitch by Aberdeen pitcher Fernando De Nabal would score one run, while a throwing error on the same play by catcher Jordan Wolf would score Schilling, giving the ‘Clones a 9-7 lead.

With Voyles still at the plate, rain began to engulf Keyspan Park and after an hour plus rain delay, the game was called, giving the Cyclones an unconventional, but nevertheless rewarding 9-7 victory.

“The chemistry on this team is unbelievable right now,” said Cyclones reliever Edgar Ramirez. “We all really mesh well.”

Notes

Every Brooklyn regular had a hit in tonight’s game except for first baseman Jason Jacobs, who went 0 for 3, with three strikeouts.

“He took early batting practice with Guadalupe [Jabalera] today and yesterday with our hitting coordinator, Lamar Johnson,” said Alfonzo. “He’s working really hard and I hope he breaks out of this slump soon.”

JR Voyles reached base in every game this season and is hitting .387 overall.

“I’ve never started a season this hot before,” said Voyles. “I hope I can keep it going.”