IronBirds 1-5 on the week

Playing in the first game of a five-date road set on Wednesday night, the Aberdeen IronBirds dropped their second straight game, going down 9-1 to the host-team Staten Island Yankees.

Through Wednesday's contest, the IronBirds, who snapped a nine-game losing streak on Monday, are 2-11, which puts them at the bottom of the New York-Penn League's four-team McNamara Division, 3.5 games behind the third-place Hudson Valley squad.

Staten Island struck the first blow in the home half of the fourth, as the second Yankee hitter of the frame smacked a one-out, solo homer off Aberdeen starter David Baker. After retiring the third batter via strikeout, Baker issued a walk, which was followed by an RBI triple that put the hosts up 2-0. Before Staten Island could do anymore damage, Baker closed out the inning with a weak infield pop out.

The IronBirds were able to cut the lead on half during the top of the sixth, with leadoff hitter Chris Clinton starting Aberdeen's first scoring rally by reaching on an infield error. Clinton put himself in scoring position by swiping second base, but Aberdeen's Mychal Givens and Joe Velleggia were retired via strikeout and fly ball, respectively. With two down and his teammate on second, Wynston Sawyer delivered by lining a single to left field that allowed Clinton to motor home.

Now up by just one run, Staten Island padded their lead a bit in the bottom half of the sixth, with Baker surrendering another one-out, solo home run. Baker was replaced by reliever Sam Taveras after getting the second out, and Taveras proceeded to walk the next three batters in succession. With runners at every bag and needing an out to escape, Taveras ended the frame by coaxing a groundout to third baseman Connor Narron.

It wasn't until the eighth inning that the Yankees would break things open, first getting to reliever Orlando Alfonso for two earned runs on two hits. Enrico Jimenez came out of the Aberdeen bullpen and surrendered four runs on four walks and one hit before being lifted in favor on James Brandhorst, who exited the inning with a sacrifice fly, a strikeout and a fly out to center.

Aberdeen loaded the bases in the visiting half of the eighth, but the Yankees were able to escape the frame by getting Narron to hit into an inning-ending groundout.

At 2-for-4 with a pair of singles, Dudley Leonora was the only IronBird with more than one hit. Sawyer went 1-for-2 with a pair of walks.

Baker (0-1) went 5-2/3 innings, striking out six, walking one and allowing three earned runs on four hits in the loss.

'Birds lose a tight one

One night after ending their nine-game losing streak, the IronBirds were knocked off 1-0 at home by the Brooklyn Cyclones.

Aberdeen dropped the match-up despite outhitting their guests 5-4, and though the Cyclones were just 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position, the IronBirds went 0-for-8 in similar situations, leaving seven men on base in all.

Making his third start of the season, Aberdeen's Jake Cowan (0-2) came through with a fine outing, working through six innings in which he allowed just three hits, struck out five and issued two walks. Unfortunately for Cowan, two of the three hits he surrendered came in the top of the second, when Brooklyn tagged a pair of doubles and scored the game's lone run. As Aberdeen was unable to tie things up in its remaining eight at-bats, the IronBird starter was charged with his second loss of the year.

Taking over for Cowan in the seventh was Alex Schmarzo, who allowed one walk in two innings of hitless relief. Jose Mota came out of the bullpen in the ninth and closed things down for Aberdeen, striking out two, walking one, and surrendering one hit during one frame of work.

Sawyer was 2-for-3 with a double, which was Aberdeen's lone extra-base hit. Narron was the only other IronBird with multiple hits, as he went 2-for-3 with two singles. Leonora was 1-for-3 in the loss, while fellow IronBirds Riley Hornback and Cody Young both earned a pair of walks.

Losing streak ended

The Aberdeen IronBirds put the skid on a nine-game losing streak Monday night by nipping the visiting Brooklyn Cyclones, 4-3.

The winning rally started in the home half of the eighth when, with Aberdeen trailing 3-2, Clinton hit a two-out single. Mychal Givens then singled deep in the hole to shortstop, with Clinton advancing to third on the play. Velleggia's ball to right field was dropped, allowing Clinton to score and Givens reached third. The Cyclones second baseman dropped the relay throw and Givens raced home for the 4-3 lead.

Brooklyn went down in order in the top of the ninth, and Steve Mazur earned his first save of the year.

Aberdeen took a lead in the bottom of the second. Narron and Hornback each walked and with two outs, Leonora hit an RBI double that plated Narron, giving the IronBirds a 1-0 lead.

Aberdeen extended its lead in the bottom of the third with a Clinton single and a Velleggia two-out RBI single that scored Clinton for a 2-0 lead.

Brooklyn scored three runs in three separate innings — the fourth, seventh and eighth — to take a 3-2 lead and set up the Aberdeen late game heroics.

Aberdeen starter Parker Bridwell went five innings with no decision, while Trent Howard came on to pitch the eighth inning to earn his first win in his professional debut.

Walks, errors lead to ninth loss

On Sunday at Ripken Stadium, the IronBirds plated just one run for the second straight game and lost 6-1 to the visiting Brooklyn Cyclones. The bad combination of walks and errors helped get Aberdeen to its ninth straight loss.

IronBirds pitchers walked nine batters and the defense committed five errors.

Brooklyn got on the scoreboard in the second inning, an inning that saw Aberdeen starter and loser Aaron Wirsch walk two, throw a wild pitch and commit a pair of throwing errors. The results were a 2-0 lead for the Cyclones.

Brooklyn added a third run in the third when a walk to Javier Rodriguez turned into a run after second baseman Leonora committed the team's third throwing error in as many innings.

The Cyclones boosted the lead to 5-0 in the fifth with two more runs that began with another walk. Ismael Tijerina led off with a walk and Rodriguez added a one-out single. Both scored on a Brian Harrison two-run single.

Aberdeen avoided the shutout in the sixth when Adam Davis, the Orioles' 2011 11th round draft pick, advanced to second base on a two-base error and then scored on Martin Serrata's RBI single.

Brooklyn added its final run in its last at bat as Brandon Brown homered over the left field wall to finalize the scoring, as the IronBirds were shut down in order in the bottom of the ninth.

Givens homers, but Yankees sweep

In Saturday's loss, the IronBirds were limited to a single run by the Staten Island Yankees, who beat the locals 7-1 to complete the three-game sweep.

Givens supplied the IronBirds' only run, blasting a solo homer to left field in the bottom of the first inning. Givens was most of the Aberdeen offense on the night, finishing with three of Aberdeen's five hits.

Aberdeen starter Matthew Drummond (0-2) took the loss, lasting just an inning and two-thirds. He allowed four hits and four earned runs while walking three and striking out two.

Yankees steal one late

In Friday night's loss, the IronBirds suffered one of the most stinging defeats in the streak. Aberdeen took a 5-3 lead into the top of the ninth, but Staten Island scored three runs to steal the win, defeating the IronBirds, 6-5.

Staten Island got on the board in the top of the first off Aberdeen starter Baker. Culver walked, advanced to second on a balk, went to third on a wild pitch and then scored on an Angelo Gumbs groundout.

Aberdeen used the long ball to pull even in the second as Jeremy Nowak hit a homerun off the maintenance shed beyond the IronBird bullpen in right field. Sawyer followed with a single and came around to give the IronBirds a 2-1 lead on Leonora's RBI double.

The IronBirds scored again in the bottom of the third. After a pair of strikeouts to begin the inning, Narron drew a walk and Nowak then stepped in and hit his second homerun, a two-run blast to left field, giving the IronBirds a 4-1 lead. Sawyer followed with his own dinger a moment later, going back-to-back to excite the crowd and push the home team ahead 5-1.

The Yankees chiseled away at the IronBirds lead with single runs in the fourth and sixth innings to trim the Aberdeen lead to 5-3.

Culver singled and scored in the fourth when IronBirds pitcher Baker walked three of four batters to force in a run. In the sixth, Zach Wilson hit a ground-rule double to score on a Casey Stevenson RBI single.

The score remained 5-3 into the top of the ninth, when the Yankees loaded the bases on a single, walk and fielder's choice. All three came around to score as Staten Island took advantage of two walks, two hit batsmen and an infield single. The three runs gave Staten Island a 6-5 lead.

Aberdeen's Leonora gave the crowd a bit of hope, singling with two outs, but a strikeout ended the game.

Jimenez took the loss for the IronBirds and fell to 0-1.

Extra inning heartbreak

It was heartbreak for the host IronBirds on June 23 as the Staten Island Yankees edged the IronBirds 3-2 in 10 innings.

Aberdeen watched a 2-1 lead slip away in the sixth and then saw Staten Island pull out the win in the 10th as a one-out walk led to the game-winner.

Aberdeen had the tie and winning runs on the corners in the bottom of the 10th, but Velleggia struck out to end the game.

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