Season Record: 33-43
Coming into the 2015 season, the Brooklyn Cyclones' roster seemed intriguing, but overall lackluster. Unlike in the previous few years, the roster seemed to lack a bona fide prospect. In 2014, the Cyclones fielded a team that included Michael Conforto, Marcos Molina, and Amed Rosario. In 2013, Gavin Cecchini, Rob Gsellman, and Akeel Morris played in Brooklyn. In 2012, manager Rich Donnelly penciled Brandon Nimmo and Kevin Plawecki into the lineup, and had one of the most impressive pitching rotations in Cyclones history, with Luis Cessa, Rainy Lara, Luis Mateo, Hansel Robles, and Gabriel Ynoa all having monster years. Regardless, like death and taxes, the Cyclones could always be counted on for a .500 record, at minimum. But in 2015, the unthinkable happened.
The season started off well enough, as key victories against the Staten Island Yankees and the Hudson Valley Renegades gave Brooklyn a lead in the standings in the McNamara Division. On August 1, the team possessed a solid 22-16 record. That all changed in August, which was a disastrous month for Tom Gamboa's club. The Cyclones went 3-13 until the All-Star break and closed out the month going 6-7, giving them a 9-20 record for the month. Well behind the Staten Island Yankees, Aberdeen IronBirds, and Hudson Valley Renegades, any talk of Brooklyn winning another division title ceased. By the end of August, the question was whether or not the Cyclones could keep their streak of .500-or-better seasons going.
On Wednesday, September 2, having been circling the drain for weeks, Brooklyn lost, 2-1, to the Connecticut Tigers in the second game of a doubleheader. With the loss, the Cyclones were guaranteed a sub-.500 record, the first time in club history. The team hobbled to the finish line, getting swept by the Staten Island Yankees to end the season.
Whereas numerous other Cyclones players were streaky or faded in the dog days, Jeff Diehl was consistent all season long, and his team-leading batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage are a testament to that. The utility fielder led the team in home runs with five, and finished third in runs driven in.
Not only did Jose Garcia put up decent numbers in 2015, ranking second on the team in batting average and on-base percentage, but the Venezuelan did that while being one of the younger players on the Cyclones at 20 years old, and playing catcher. Behind the dish, Garcia threw out 31% of runners that tried to steal against him.
The 23-year-old Alex Palsha was a force out of the Cyclones' bullpen, inheriting the role of closer from Shane Bay. Palsha closed out fifteen games, notching thirteen saves. He allowed ten hits all season and gave up only a single earned run (a ninth-inning RBI triple against the Hudson Valley Renegades on August 16) during his time in Brooklyn.
The 22-year-old Tyler Badamo doesn't necessarily have the most potential among Brooklyn's starting pitchers, but he did have the best season of them all. Despite dealing with a groin issue in August, the New York native pitched the most innings on the team, posted the lowest ERA among starters, and accrued the second-highest strikeout total.