Minor League tour: Part III

Jonathan and Izzy Salant filed this report from their third stop on their nine-day tour of upstate New York Minor League ballparks, Dwyer Stadium in Batavia.

As a Mets fan, I find that the most frustrating thing about the team is that the players continually fail to deliver in the clutch. Yesterday, I learned that this failure extends into the lowest level of the minors.

The Brooklyn Cyclones, the Mets’ short-season A team, had second and third with none out and then the bases loaded with one out in the top of the seventh inning against the Batavia Muckdogs and failed to score in a 3-3 game. In the bottom of the inning, Oliver Marmol got a two-out single to break the tie and then scored on a double by Justin Roberson. In the top of the ninth, Josh Dew struck out the side on nine pitches. Final score, Batavia 5, Brooklyn 3.

Dwyer Stadium in Batavia looks like a close cousin to the Jamestown Jammers’ home park. It’s a very similar design, with covered seats behind the screen and then a few rows of seats along the first and third base lines. For five of us, seats three rows from the field behind third base cost a total of $30. One of my Washington Nationals season tickets cost $34 for one seat per game.

One difference: in Batavia, the fielders still roll the ball back to the pitcher’s mound after the third out of an inning rather than throw it into the stands for the fans. At the end of the game, Izzy hung out by the Muckdogs’ dugout and one of the last players to leave did toss him a used ball. Izzy then used it to get autographs from the players as they walked in front of the stands en route to their clubhouse.

Today, we’re going to take in an 11 a.m. Rochester Red Wings game before driving to Cooperstown for two days of the Hall of Fame and home games of the Oneonta Tigers and Binghamton Mets.

Izzy’s report: Last night’s game was incredible. My favorite part was the big comeback of the Muckdogs. In the second inning, the Brooklyn Cyclones were winning, 2-0. Then in the fifth inning, the game was tied, 3-3. In the last inning, the Muckdogs were winning, 5-3, and when it was the Cyclones’ turn to bat, the pitcher on the Muckdogs struck out three batters in a row and won the game. I want to be a pitcher too and it was fun to see him work. I also got my third ball last night.

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