Wilson Still Pleased With Effort In Cyclones Loss
Brooklyn Cyclones’ pitcher Waner Mateo, looked dominant on Tuesday throwing four scoreless innings against the New Jersey Cardinals but as the sun set on Keyspan Park, his apparent gem quickly deteriorated into a loss.
With one out in the fifth, the 20 year-old righty mishandled a weak grounder that opened the door to a five run inning for the Cardinals (6-9), who held off a Cyclones’ rally to win 5-4 and hand Brooklyn its first home loss of the season.
“He just missed the ball,” said Cyclones’ manager Mookie Wilson. “It’s just one of those crazy plays, and when young players make them, they get flustered. We’re going to talk and remind him that these are the plays that win or lose ball games. It was the difference in this one.”
Mateo hustled toward the ball as it rolled inside the first base line, and appeared to have plenty of time to throw out the runner, Carlos De La Cruz. But Mateo could not gain control of the ball as De La Cruz reached first safely. Wilson noticed a change in Mateo’s facial expression after the error.
Despite the observation, Wilson kept Mateo in the game and the Dominican Republic native gave up consecutive RBI singles, a walk and a two-run double before being knocked out of the game with the Cyclones (10-5) down
5-0.Wilson viewed Mateo’s breakdown with an idealistic perspective. The manager commended his fragile
starter for mixing in off-speed pitches and for using both sides of the plate early in the game. Wilson cajoles his players by pointing out positives and teaches his players to realize that mistakes are inevitable.
“We try to acknowledge in front of everyone whether they did good or bad,” the first-year manager said. “We need to let them know its okay to struggle.” As for Mateo’s tangible qualities, Wilson expects his arm to strengthen and, with an addition of another pitch, win consistently on higher levels.
Wilson was also especially pleased with an attempted comeback a night after his team recorded only two hits in a 1-0 win. The Cyclones scored three in the fifth and one in the sixth. Jonathan Malo tripled home a run, and D.J. Wabick added a two-run single in the fifth as the Cyclones matched the Cardinals with seven hits.
Cyclones’ reliever Michael Weintraub kept the game close by pitching three perfect innings.
“We swung the bats well,” Wilson said. “We had a nice comeback but just ran out of innings.”