ASHEVILLE, N.C. (August 22, 2023) — SS Jett Williams smashed the second pitch of the game for a home run, ultimately driving in three in the frame and reaching base three times in the contest. However, Asheville scored five times in the bottom of the ninth, erasing a seven-run deficit, as the Tourists stunned the Brooklyn Cyclones, 10-9, on Tuesday night at McCormick Field.
The night started beautifully for Brooklyn (28-21, 56-58), as Williams blasted the second pitch thrown for a solo home run. The 19-year-old’s third-consecutive game with a long ball — and second-straight with a leadoff jack — put the Cyclones in front, 1-0.
Following a hit-by-pitch and a walk, Asheville (20-29, 46-64) registered the game’s first two outs. Alas, on a 1-2 pitch, RF Stanley Consuegra rifled a three-run home run over the wall in left. The 22-year-old’s team-leading 17th home run of the season — and franchise-record-tying 22nd in his Brooklyn career — propelled the Cyclones to a 4-0 lead.
The onslaught did not stop there. DH William Lugo reached on a fielding error, while 2B D’Andre Smith was plunked, and LF Rhylan Thomas walked to load the bases. Following a pitching change, Williams roped the new arm’s first toss for a two-run single to left, capping Brooklyn’s six-run first.
Asheville snatched a couple of runs back in the bottom of the inning. CF Zach Cole was drilled and stole second before scoring on a C Miguel Palma double. 1B Ryan Wrobleski followed with a run-scoring single to pull the Tourists within four, 6-2.
Brooklyn manufactured the next three tallies to take a seven-run advantage. Consuegra walked and stole second in the third before Smith punched a two-run home run over the right-field wall. The California native’s second home run with Brooklyn stretched the cushion back to six, 8-2.
Two innings later, Smith poked a two-out double off the right-field fence and scored on Thomas’ knock to center, expanding the ‘Clones advantage to 9-2.
From there, Asheville controlled the game at the plate. The Tourists snared a run back in the bottom of the fifth when Cole walked, advanced to second on a Palma single, took third on a hit-by-pitch, and scored on a wild pitch.
An inning later, Asheville filled the bags on a 2B Kobe Kato single, a walk, and a Palma knock before a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch of Wrobleski made it a 9-4 affair.
In the eighth, RF Tyler Whitaker doubled to right-center to start the frame and took third on a ground out. Palma followed with a run-producing ground out to short, pulling Asheville within four, 9-5.
In the ninth, the Tourists would not be denied. 3B Tim Borden II started the rally with a walk and SS Tommy Sacco Jr. subsequently powered a two-run home run to right-center field. The former Texas Christian University star’s 12th blast of the year trimmed Asheville’s deficit to two, 9-7.
On the ninth pitch of the at-bat, LF Michael Sandle followed with a solo home run to left to make it a one-run game, 9-8. The clout was the third-year pro’s seventh of the season.
Following a single by Kato, Brooklyn made a pitching change. After a pop up to second, back-to-back walks loaded the bases and put the tying and winning runs in scoring position.
Palma then scalded the second pitch he saw past the diving glove of the third baseman and down the left-field line. Two men scored on the single to provide the Tourists with a walk-off, 10-9 victory.
Neither starter received a decision on Tuesday. RHP Jordany Ventura permitted four runs on six hits over 5.1 innings, striking out five for the Cyclones. RHP Alex Santos II was chased after recording two outs for the Tourists and was charged with six runs (four earned) on just two hits.
LHP Brayan De Paula (2-6) tossed an inning and a third of scoreless, one-hit relief to earn his second win out of the bullpen for Asheville. Brooklyn’s LHP Eli Ankeney (2-2) only yielded one run in a third of an inning but suffered his second defeat.
The Cyclones will try and bounce back in game two of the series on Wednesday night. LHP Felipe De La Cruz (NR) is expected to make his High-A and Cyclones debut against the Tourists’ RHP Deylen Miley (2-5, 5.30 ERA). The first pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.