September 3, 2009 – In front of the 22nd sold out crowd at the Richmond County Bank Ballpark the Staten Island Yankees swept the visiting Aberdeen Ironbirds to extend their franchise record winning streak to 13 games. The win combined with another Brooklyn loss moves the Yankees to a game and a half ahead of the Cyclones in the McNamara Division.
The Aberdeen Ironbirds took an early lead when Sean Black allowed a leadoff homerun in the second inning but the Baby Bombers did not let the lead last for very long. Luke Murton walked to start off the bottom of the inning and then scored on an RBI double by Kyle Higashioka to left field. Mike Lyon then hit a blast to the scoreboard to give the Yankees a 3-1 lead.
The Yankees added more to their lead in the bottom of the fourth. Francisco Santana started it off with a double to shallow left-centerfield. The Aberdeen centerfielder, right fielder and second baseman all stopped and allowed the ball to fall between them. DeAngelo Mack then singled to drive in Santana for the fourth Yankee run of the game. With two outs Zoilo Almonte stepped up to the plate and hit an RBI double to center to plate Mack. Kyle Higashioka then singled to center, plating Almonte, and moved to second on the throw to the plate. A wild pitch with Mike Lyon at the plate moved Higashioka to third but Lyon grounded out to third to end the inning.
In the bottom of the seventh inning the Baby Bombers came alive once again to plate five runs. DeAngelo Mack led it off with a groundball single to left before Luke Murton walked. Zoilo Almonte then loaded the bases with a single. Still with no outs catcher Kyle Higashioka singled to right to bring in Mack. A wild pitch with Mike Lyon at the plate brought in Murton. Lyon walked to load the bases once more for Kelvin Castro. Castro singled to right, bringing in Almonte. Carmen Angelini then popped out to the shortstop and Francisco Santana flew out to right before Justin Milo had a 2-RBI single to center to give the Yankees an 11-1 lead.
“It’s been great to play a little more and help the team down the home stretch of the season,” said Milo, “When you get to play more often you get more comfortable at the plate and I’m just trying to make the most of my opportunities and help the team”
“Tonight’s win felt great.” Milo added, “Just keeping this streak going feels great and getting closer to winning the division is really exciting.”
Staten Island added one more in the bottom of the eighth. Chad Gross lead it off with a double to left and moved to third on a ground out by Zoilo Almonte before scoring on a ground out by Buck Afenir.
Yankees starter Sean Black earned his sixth win and is now tied with reliever Ronny Marte for the team lead in wins. Black threw 67 pitches, 42 for strikes, in 5 innings allowing only a homerun while striking out 5 batters sitting in the low 90s with fastball and topping out at 94 in the first and second innings. He was followed by Ronny Marte and Michael Solbach who each threw 2 innings of shutout ball.
The win moves the Baby Bombers to just one game behind the Mahoning Valley Scrappers for the best record in the league. Tomorrow night the Yankees will begin a three-game set with the Vermont Lake Monsters to finish up the NY-Penn League season.