Alou and Waechter Take V-Cats to the Vet, 7-3
by: Patrick Hickey, Jr. | Senior Writer - NY Sports Day | Monday, July 23, 2007

BROOKLYN, NY - With the Brooklyn offense flying high as of late, it’s not that the Cyclones needed Moises Alou in their lineup today, but his presence was definitely a welcomed one as the former All-Star went one for four with a RBI in a 7-3 Brooklyn win.

Posting a 3.38 ERA in three starts at Keyspan this season, Cyclones starter Nick Waechter, who had nine K’s in his last appearance in Coney Island, got off to a quick start today, striking out two V-Cats in the first and didn’t look back. Working extremely quick on the mound and having a stone-cold look on his face throughout, Waechter looked more like more like ferocious former big leaguer Kevin Brown than a 22-year old in class-A ball.

“I probably had one too many red bulls before the game,” said Waechter, who ended up striking out seven and earning his second victory of the season. “I felt really good out there today and I was just trying to feed on what I did last time out.”

Making a rehab appearance with Brooklyn today, Alou got the Mets Single-A affiliate on the board in the first, grounding out after a Raul Reyes triple, giving the ‘Clones a 1-0 lead. Continuing right where they left off in the second, Jake Eigsti did his best impersonation of Alou, getting an RBI ground out after a Will Vogl triple, putting the Cyclones ahead 2-0.

“Alou was swinging the bat well today,” said Cyclones manager Edgar Alfonzo. “He had a few good at bats tonight.”

The Brooklyn offense would then continue to produce in the third, as Valley Cats starter Colt Adams would get himself into a bases-loaded jam with no outs, where they would have to face Alou yet again. While the Mets left fielder would ground into a double play, another run would cross the plate in the process, stretching the Cyclones lead to 3-0. Adams would continue to run into problems in the fourth and after a RBI double by Jefferies Tatford with one out, Tri-City manager Pete Rancont would send him to the bench in favor of Victor Garate.

Unfortunately for Garate, he wouldn’t fare much better. The next two hitters the right-hander faced would reach on errors that caused two more runs to score, giving the Mets Single-A affiliate a 6-0 lead and after another RBI from Eigsti in the fifth, the ‘Clones found themselves with up 7-0. Scoring runs in each of the first five innings, Brooklyn gave Waechter all the run support he needed.

“He was untouchable tonight,” said Alfonzo of his starting pitcher. “His last three starts he’s done really well.”

Waechter was so sharp on the mound today that only a few runs would have sufficed, as the 6’3 righty gave up only three hits before being replaced by Greg Mullens in the sixth. Making his first appearance of the season for Brooklyn, Mullens didn’t look like the same pitcher who went 7-2 for Kingsport last season and gave up a run in only an inning.

However, after Mullens’s mediocre performance, the V-Cats got themselves back into the game. Edgar Ramirez, who has been a stalwart in the bullpen for this season, came into the game in the seventh and would only last an inning and a third. Giving up two runs before Dan McDonald would come in and clean up his mess, it was obvious that Ramirez was off his game. Continuing the trend of mediocrity the Brooklyn bullpen was exhibiting today, McDonald would load the bases in the ninth and put the tying run at the plate before getting the final out of the inning that kept the V-Cats scoreless, leading to a 7-3 win.

Winning their second in a row after losing two in a row earlier in the week, the Cyclones look like the same team they were a week ago and seem primed to run this current winning streak into the All-Star break.

“When you play good fundamental baseball, you’re going to win a lot of games and that’s what we did today,” said Alfonzo. “We have a bunch of guys who do that every night.”