Aberdeen's Wynston Sawyer gets ready to grab a throw for… (Bobby Parker for The Aegis,…)
Despite rapping out double-digit hits and running up a three-run lead early in their Tuesday-night home game, the IronBirds could not come through with a victory, losing 12-5 to theBrooklyn Cyclones.
Aberdeen posted 12 hits for the game, just one less than Brooklyn's 13.
With the loss, the IronBirds fell to 9-23 on the season, eight and a half games behind third-place Hudson Valley in the New York-Penn League's four-team McNamara Division.
"Offensively, we did pretty good," IronBirds manager Leo Gomez said after the game. "We didn't do so good with men on base; we left some guys on base and should have scored some more runs tonight. But, they're hitting the ball, swinging the bats well. We had 12 hits tonight, and the last two weeks we've been doing a good job offensively, so I'm happy with what I've seen."
The IronBirds were running well enough to set a franchise record in Tuesday's loss, as they stole a combined nine bases.
"They pretty much have a green light [to steal]," said Gomez, who predicted before the season that his team would rack up many stolen bases during the 2011 campaign. "They did a good job tonight. There was a aggressiveness on the base paths, and that's good to see."
Aberdeen ran out to a 2-0 lead during its first at-bat, with leadoff man Glynn Davis starting the opening-frame rally with a ground ball single up the middle. After stealing second base, Davis moved over to third on a wild pitch, while Sammie Starr walked, then swiped second himself.
With two men in scoring position, Mychal Givens stroked a single to right that pushed Davis home, and moved Starr over to third. Following Wynston Sawyer's strikeout, Austin Goolsby knocked a fly ball to deep right that allowed Starr to tag up and score his team's second run.
In the second inning, Aberdeen's Kyle Hoppy led off with a base hit to center, and moved over to third when Martin Serrata's groundball single to right was mishandled by the Brooklyn outfielder. With runners on the corners and Starr at the plate, Hoppy broke for home during the Cyclone hurler's windup and slid in ahead of the throw, while Serrata stole second. After Starr walked, the IronBirds bench called for another double steal, which was successful, putting two runners in scoring position, but Givens grounded out to end the inning.
"We need to score some runs," said Gomez, whose team has pulled off the double steal of home and second several times in the past two weeks. "Anything we can do to score, we're going to do that, so why not? So far we've done it a couple times and it's worked, so lets keep it quiet and see if we can do it again."
Up 3-1 heading into the home half of the third, Aberdeen padded its lead by one when Goolsby, who had reached on a two-out single and moved to second on Hoppy's base hit, came around to score on a single to center by Dudley Leonora.
Following a silent fourth inning, Brooklyn took advantage of pitching and defensive lapses by the IronBirds to post five runs, and go up 6-4.
Aberdeen starter Jake Cowan issued two walks, surrendered three singles, and uncorked a wild pitch, while Goolsby allowed a pitch to get by him and Wynston Sawyer committed an error at first base, all of which resulted in four runs.
Reliever Zach Petersime came out of the Aberdeen bullpen with two down and men on the corners, and he gave up an RBI single before escaping the frame on a fly out to right.
Trailing by two, Aberdeen began its half of the fifth with a base hit to left by Connor Narron, which was followed by Goolsby earning a walk. Hoppy pushed both his teammates over 90 ft. with a sacrifice bunt back to the pitcher, and Narron later scurried home from third on Leonora's groundout to short.
Brooklyn scored three more in the seventh, tagging Petersime for two singles, a double and a triple to go up 9-5, then added another three runs in the eighth to run up a 12-5 advantage.
Recent IronBirds addition Kyle Simon, the Baltimore Orioles' fourth-round pick in this year's June draft, made his Aberdeen debut, coming on in relief in the ninth. After allowing a leadoff single, Simon coaxed a grounder to Givens at shortstop that resulted in a 6-4-3 double play, then exited the inning on a groundout to third.
Sawyer, 0-4 through the first eight innings, led off Aberdeen's final turn at the plate by belting double to the left field corner, and moved over to third on Narron's groundout, but he was left stranded at third.
Cowan (0-4) was charged with the loss after going 4-2/3 innings in which he allowed four earned runs on five hits, struck out give and walked four.
Davis led the IronBirds' offense, going 3-for-5 with a double and one run scored, while Leonora was 1-for-4 with two RBIs.