Welcome back IronBirds Fans! Last week we had the opportunity to check in with Paul Taylor, the radio announcer for the 2013 IronBirds. Paul traveled with the team to all of the IronBirds games this season allowing him to see the top moments. When I sat down to interview Paul, he went through all of his notes from each game this year and picked out his top 10 moments to share with.
Paul Taylor’s Top Ten Moments
10. Ferrous winning Mascot Mania – “The Aberdeen fans helped show their IronBirds’ pride as they voted Ferrous as the top mascot in the New York-Penn League on August 1st. Ferrous beat out Sandy (Brooklyn), Southpaw (Tri-City), and Champ (Vermont).
9. July 9th at Tri-City -” This game was an 11 a.m. start and came after playing a twelve inning game the night before. That morning shortly after the team arrived at the stadium, there was a fire drill. That game we faced the #1 overall draft pick Mark Appel and we collected three hits off of him. We had to battle back from a 2-0 deficit and won 8-2 in 10 innings highlighted by an Anthony Vega home run to right field.
Photo by Bob Rinker
8. Monday road games – “We played six Monday road games throughout the season. A game at Jamestown was rained out and one at Staten Island became a double header. The other four games (at SI, at HV, at TRI, at LOW) all went extra innings. Aberdeen went 2-2 in those four contests, winning at Hudson Valley and at Lowell.”
7. July 5th game after winning 5 in a row – “We had just swept a three game series versus Hudson Valley and then the first two of three versus Brooklyn. The sweep of Hudson Valley was the first time we had swept the Renegades in three games since 2006. This was the point in the season where we actually got above .500. We would later repeat this streak at the end of the season.”
6. First win on June 22nd at Brooklyn – “Our season seemed to revolve around Brooklyn. Three of the four most important wins of the 2013 season came at MCU Park in Brooklyn, New York. The IronBirds won their first game of the season after dropping our first five. Sebastian Vader struck out ten Cyclones, leading the IronBirds to an extra inning win. Ten weeks later the IronBirds would go on to sweep Brooklyn on the road to take a commanding lead in the McNamera Division that we would later clinch on September 2nd.”
5. Trey Mancini breaking the record for number of hits in a season on September 4th -“Trey Mancini was nothing short of spectacular this season. He broke the record for most hits in a season, as well as highest batting average. The Orioles’ 8th round pick was the most consistent IronBird all summer long, and was rewarded as the 2013 Team MVP.”
4. June 25th and July 28th – “The June 25th game at Staten Island is when the power outage happened. It was the the middle of the 5th inning and the IronBirds were down 8-4 and then the lights went out. When the lights did not come back on, the game had to be suspended until July 28th. The IronBirds were able to plate 2 runs in the 7th and the 8th innings to force extras. The IronBirds would go on to win 11-8. Minor League Baseball‘s rules state that in the event of a suspended game, statistics are retroactive to the original date of the game. Because of this, Austin Urban ended up throwing 146 pitches since the game was finished over a month later.”
3. Jared Breen’s hitting streak – “Breen clinched the IronBirds record of 18 straight games with a hit. His streak in reality began on June 26th and he continued to have a hit in the next 16 games. At this point he had tied the record of 17 straight games with hit set by Brandon Fahey in 2005. On June 25th in Staten Island, Breen did not get a hit, but that game was suspended. Nine days after he tied the record, in the second half of the suspended game on July 28th, Breen had two hits. Since the statistics from this game are retroactive to the June 25th game, Breen recorded his 18th hit setting the franchise record.”
2. The Playoff Game – “After twelve seasons in the making, what a better day to play the IronBirds first playoff game than on the 18th anniversary of Cal Ripken Jr. breaking Lou Gehrig’s streak. While the game did not go as we had all hoped, for those of us in attendance it is a night we won’t forget.”
1. Clinching the Division – “The excitement was palpable all day. From the front office, to the press box, to the clubhouse, and the stands in particular, there was almost a nervous excitement. The Cyclones game went final in the first inning of our game, so everyone knew what was going to happen if the IronBirds would win. They did, and after Trey Mancini fielded the final out, the fans went nuts and the players were able to celebrate a division title after starting out 0-5.”
Thanks again to Paul Taylor for the great interview and providing fans for great play by play coverage both at home and on the road. Don’t forget if you want to listen to more “PTRadio” tune in and listen to Stevenson Hockey.
Fans don’t forget to keep sending your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and check back on Monday for Mailbox Monday to see if yours gets answered.
Until then… Go IronBirds!