WILMINGTON, Del. (July 6, 2023) — RHP Blade Tidwell punched out a career-high-tying 11 for the second-straight start, but it was late-game heroics that propelled Brooklyn to a fourth-consecutive win. The Cyclones scratched across three runs in the 10th inning to defeat the Wilmington Blue Rocks, 7-4, on Thursday night at Frawley Stadium.
Ahead 4-2 entering the bottom of the ninth, Brooklyn (9-3, 37-40) could not maintain their two-run advantage.
Wilmington (4-8, 33-43) loaded the bases with one out thanks to a trio of walks. On a 3-2 pitch, pinch-hitter Viandel Peña smacked a line drive into the right-center field gap. Two runs scored to tie the game, but the man from first was thrown out at the plate trying to score the winning run.
Following a pop up to second that ended the rally with the winning run at third, Brooklyn put the game to bed in the top of the extra frame.
With the automatic runner at second, 1B-2B Chase Estep started the top of the 10th with a ringing double to right-center field, while 2B D’Andre Smith followed with another two-base hit of his own. The duo of run-scoring doubles put the Cyclones back ahead, 6-4.
Brooklyn mustered one last insurance run in the 10th when RF Omar De Los Santos walked and safely reached second on an errant flip on a fielder’s choice ground ball to short. With the4 bases full, CF Rhylan Thomas roped an RBI single to center, providing the ‘Clones with a 7-4 advantage.
RHP Joshua Cornielly (2-2) — who registered the final two outs in regulation — slammed the door shut in the bottom of the frame. The 22-year-old induced a ground ball and a pair of strikeouts to secure his second win of the year and a 7-4 triumph for Brooklyn.
The Cyclones started fast on Thursday, opening the game with a crooked number.
C Kevin Parada poked a single to right with one out in the first and moved to second when SS William Lugo walked. After a fielder’s choice and a walk, De Los Santos tapped a grounder to short. The flip to second was late, as Smith slid in safely. Parada scored on the fielder’s choice to give the ‘Clones a 1-0 lead. DH César Berbesi subsequently provided a two-run single to balloon the edge to three.
Wilmington started to chip away in the following frames. LF Jared McKenzie doubled and scored on a 2B-1B José Sánchez single in the second, while CF Nick Shumpert clubbed a solo home run — his second of the year — on the first pitch of the third.
In front 3-2, LF Alex Ramírez created an insurance run by himself for the Cyclones in the seventh. The 20-year-old singled to right to lead off the inning and, while in motion, went first-to-third on a ground out to third. Lugo followed with a sacrifice fly to left to give Brooklyn a two-run, 4-2, advantage.
Tidwell was outstanding despite taking a no-decision for the Cyclones. The 22-year-old punched out 11 for the second-straight start, allowing two runs on six hits.
LHP Andrew Alvarez settled down after a rocky first inning. The southpaw yielded three runs on six hits over five innings, striking out five, in a no-decision.
RHP Holden Powell (0-2) permitted all three runs — two earned — in the top of the 10th and was saddled with his second defeat with the Blue Rocks.
Brooklyn will go for a season-best fifth-straight win on Friday night. LHP Eli Ankeney (2-0, 1.59) is expected to make his first career start for the Cyclones as part of a bullpen game. The Blue Rocks are projected to counter with RHP Rodney Theophile (0-3, 3.86). The first pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.