Costly Errors Cost Clones in 6-4 Loss
by: Patrick Hickey, Jr. | Senior Writer - NY Sports Day | Monday, June 30, 2008
BROOKLYN, NY- If Mets first round pick Ike Davis was brought to Brooklyn for only one reason, it was so he could be a difference maker on offense. Going 1-5 with an RBI on Sunday against Hudson Valley on Sunday however, the recently signed first basemen isn't quite ready yet to be the impact player the team desperately needs. The rest of his teammates didn't help the cause much either though, amassing only two extra-base hits and committing two costly errors in a 6-4 loss.
“We scored four runs today,” said Cyclones skipper Edgar Alfonzo of his team that ended up with 12 hits on the night. “I know this team is going to score runs. Again, we were one hit away from winning the game. We finished the game strong too, so I'm proud of them for that.”
Jim Fuller made his first professional start for the Cyclones and despite giving up two hits to start the game, the lefty managed to keep the Renegades off the board in the first. Giving up another hit in the second, Fuller was saved after John Servidio made his fourth outfield assist of the season, nailing Michael Ross at the plate and keeping the game scoreless.
Kirk Nieuwenhuis got the Cyclones on the board with an RBI single in the second, scoring Mets fourth round pick Sean Ratliff, who singled earlier in his first professional at bat.
The lead wouldn't last for long however, as the third inning was also an adventure for Fuller, who left the game with the base loaded in favor of reliever Wendy Rosa.
“He threw the ball well for his first start here in Brooklyn,” said Cyclones catcher Ralph Henriquez of Fuller. “He had good stuff. He was a lot better than it looked.”
The Cyclones reliever couldn't keep Fuller's shutout though, walking Ross and allowing a run to cross the plate to tie the game. That was all the offense Hudson Valley could muster however, as catcher John Mollicone grounded out to Brooklyn third baseman Zach Lutz to end the inning.
Brooklyn then got back on top in the third, as Davis scorched an opposite field double that scored Matt Bouchard. Things then began to fall apart for Renegades starter Chris Andujar, who ended up surrendering an RBI ground out from Zach Lutz, giving the Mets Single-A affiliate a 3-1 lead.
Both teams then made pitching changes in the sixth, as Manny Olivares came into the game for Brooklyn and Rob Della Grotta came out of the Hudson Valley bullpen and replaced Andujar. Both pitched scoreless frames in the sixth, but Olivares ended up coughing up the lead, giving up a bases loaded single to pinch-hitter Anthony Scelfo, which tied the score at 3-3.
Mike Lynn came into the game in eighth for Brooklyn and only lasted two hitters, getting Mark Thomas to ground out and walking Jason Appel. Lefty side-armer Roy Merritt made his Keyspan debut and instead of getting out of the inning on a routine ground ball that should have been converted into a double play, Cyclones shortstop Matt Bouchard missed second baseman Josh Satin and threw the ball into right field, allowing a run to score and gave Hudson Valley a 4-3 lead with only one out.
A Jason Corder sacrifice fly later in the eighth also padded the Renegades lead, giving them a two-run cushion with only two innings left to play.
“Roy gave me exactly what I wanted with the bases loaded,” said Bouchard. “I rushed it a bit though and I was a bit off balance. I was too quick with it. I really wanted to get the double play.”
Unlike earlier in the week, the Cyclones didn't have any come from behind magic in them tonight, as Joshua Satow, who replaced Della Grotta in the seventh, kept the Baby Mets off the scoreboard in the eighth. Merritt continued pitching in the ninth and gave up a Mollicone RBI single, giving the Renegades a three-run lead with Brooklyn's last licks on the way.
Coming in after Satow gave up a Henriquez single, Renegades closer Travis Risser proved to be no where near as potent as his team's offense, but was saved by solid defense. Giving up a RBI single from Murphy that scored Henriquez, Risser got Zach Lutz to ground into a a game-ending double-play, putting the finishing touches on a 6-4 Renegades win.
“We had a lot of chances, but we didn't take advantage of them,” said Bouchard, who had two hits on the night, to go along with two errors. “Our hits weren't timely either, we put together a couple of good innings late. If we would have put them together earlier, things could have turned out different.”
According to a source in the organization, the Mets other first round pick, Reese Havens, is expected to DH today in the second game of the series against Hudson Valley.
Daniel Murphy concluded his rehab assignment with the Clones last night, amassing seven hits and two RBI in just three games and is scheduled to rejoin the Double-A B-Mets today.
“He's a professional hitter,” said Alfonzo. “He can hit.”
Alfonzo also announced that outfielder Brandon Kawal [stiff back] and Luis Alen [chin laceration] have been added to the Disabled List to make room for Havens. Alfonzo also expects a roster move to take place tomorrow to help sort out a team that is currently carrying six outfielders and three catchers.