TROY - When the Tri-City ValleyCats hitters found out it was "NFL Night" at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium, they responded accordingly, scoring a touchdown and two field goals in a 13-10 win over the Brooklyn Cyclones in front of 5,107 fans Sunday night.
The ugly game, which sent 91 men to the plate in three hours and 41 minutes, featured seven unearned runs, nine wild pitches, four errors, two hit batsmen, and three blown saves.
Even though the Cyclones (15-42) jumped out to an early four run lead, the 'Cats (29-27) fought back three big innings to secure their sixth victory over Brooklyn this season.
Third baseman Adrian Tovalin launched a 370 foot home run in his first at bat, then followed that with a two-run double an inning later to tally a four RBI day. Not to be outdone, Bryan De La Cruz, who is 6 for his last 15, registered two, two-run singles in the second and seventh frames.
OF J.J. Matijevic added two hits of his own, a double in the first inning and a solo home run (5) in the fourth, a 417 foot moonshot to right-centerfield.
Alex House was shelled for five runs (three earned) in the start, and threw just two innings. Brooklyn pounced on him right away, with four of the first five Cyclones collecting hits in the first inning. Parker Mushinski, who came on for House in the third inning, didn't fare much better. He gave up four runs, all earned, on four hits and two walks, and tossed four wild pitches.
Righty Hunter Martin, despite registering a blown save, picked up the win in three and two thirds innings of relief. He struck out four Cyclones before Luis Ramirez tossed a clean ninth to earn his third save of the season.
Seven Cyclones collected multi-hit games, including LF Quinn Brodey, who went 3-5 with two RBI, and a run scored.
Jose Geraldo, who made his third start for Brooklyn, got touched up for seven runs (four earned) in less than two innings. Relievers Placido Torres and Cannon Chadwick combined to allow two runs across four and a third innings before Tony Dibrell (0-1) gave up four in the seventh to suffer his first loss of the season.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED: In the first inning, with the bases loaded and two outs, Franklin Correa hit a deep fly ball to right field, De La Cruz had it deflect off of his glove, scoring the third and fourth runs of the game.
With the bases loaded for the ValleyCats in the bottom of the third, Jake Meyers grounded into a rare, 1-2-3 double play. He bounced the baseball back to the pitcher, who threw home, and then onto first, before De La Cruz flew out to end the inning.
Later in the game, in the bottom of the seventh and the score tied at 10, Miguelangel Sierra lifted a ball to deep right, and Jose Miguel Medina had the ball deflect off of his glove, nearly in the same spot as De La Cruz's error.
SOUNDS SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS: The 'Cats pitching staff leads the New York-Penn League in strikeouts, but also in walks, however only issued two free passes Sunday night. Brooklyn, meanwhile, walked seven ValleyCats, and hit two more with pitches.
Matijevic, who scored three times Sunday, has scored nine times in his last four games. His 31 runs scored are good for fourth in the New York-Penn League.
UP NEXT: The 'Cats will look for the three game sweep tomorrow night at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium. Tri-City will hand the ball to southpaw Adam Bleday, (27th Round, 2017 HOU), who has pitched two innings this season. Bleday will be opposed by right-hander Nicolas Debora (0-4, 2.38), with first pitch scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.