2004-07-16 / Sports

Cyclones’ Watts Hits The Ball And Sign

By Elio Velez

Cyclones’ Watts Hits The Ball And Sign


Derran Watts (pictured with Cyclones Cap) hit the Garage clothing advertisement at left field in a game early this season and won a free suit. Watts poses with the staff of Garage Clothing. Photo by Rebecca CettaDerran Watts (pictured with Cyclones Cap) hit the Garage clothing advertisement at left field in a game early this season and won a free suit. Watts poses with the staff of Garage Clothing. Photo by Rebecca Cetta

By Elio Velez

Cyclones outfielder Derran Watts was chatting with teammate Dante Brinkley before the bottom of the 9th inning in a 2-2 game last Sunday against Staten Island. Brinkley joked that he would drive in the game winning RBI if Watts bunted for a base hit to get on first. Watts didn’t exactly follow Brinkley’s game plan.

As Watts bunted to home plate, Yankees’ pitcher Shaun Parker hurried the throw the ball past the first baseman and down the right field line. Rightfielder Edward Gonzales could not handle the ball and it caromed to the right field warning track.

Watts immediately applied his excellent speed and scored to give the Cyclones an exciting and unbelievable 3-2 win.

Born in Brampton, a few miles from Toronto, Canada, Watts loved baseball as soon as he played in t-ball league and soon after in little league.

He was inspired to play baseball while going to the Skydome and watching the early 1990’s World Series Toronto Blue Jays teams.

"I grew up watching (John) Olerud, Joe Carter and Paul Molitor. That experience was awesome. It was the best time to watch," Watts said. "I remember where I was and what I was doing when Joe Carter hit the home run to win the Series (in Game 6 against Philadelphia in 1993)".

As an avid Maple Leafs fan, Watts loved hockey but knew his playing career would in baseball. After a good playing career at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, that and his solid outfield play to be drafted in the 12th round in 2001.

Watts is in his third stint with the Cyclones and is currently rehabbing with the team after an early left shoulder injury while playing with Capital City this season, He is getting plenty of playing time at the top of a potent batting order. The results have been good so far for the 24 year old hitting .292 and 10 RBI in 24 games.

Cyclones Soaring

The Cyclones finished off a great week in which they swept their city rival Staten Island Yankees and the 2003 Penn League Champion Williamsport Crosscutters. The Cyclones have a 17-8 record and a first place lead over Aberdeen (Baltimore Orioles). One highlight was the Cyclones day-night doubleheader sweep of Williamsport last Wednesday. The Cyclones won the first game 4-2. A torrential downpour delayed the second game twice for two hours total before the game was started. The Cyclones won 6-0 in the nightcap.

Brooklyn native Joseph Gadjos was named the millionth fan but missed on all three chances to win a million dollars last Tuesday. He wins a trip to Mets’ spring training in Florida and other prizes. The Cylones will hold Ladies Day Clinic at Keyspan Park on Saturday starting at 11 a.m.. For $25, the Cyclones will teach the fundamentals of baseball.


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