By: Pat Mullen
Battle Creek, Mich. – It was a wild finish to the first half of the NWL season in southwest Michigan as the Growlers and the Bombers squared off in a double header.
The Growlers got the best of Battle Creek in game one at Homer Stryker Field in Kalamazoo, winning 10-3.
The Bombers were able to bounce back in game two back at C.O. Brown Stadium, however, and won the game in extra innings 5-4.
The Bombers are hoping this win can kick start the second half of the season, starting Wednesday at home verse the South Division champs of the first half, Lakeshore.
“We are just going to ride what just happen,” Coach Rob said after the win. “An extra inning game. We had lightning, rain, and we come up big right there and need to carry it on to the second half.”
The game was full of theatrics including the weather, which delayed the game in the 11th inning and the Bombers at the plate.
Battle Creek would end up pulling it out after the delay had concluded on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Laz Rivera.
Offensively, there were was one person in particular who stood out: newcomer Colby Bortles (Ole Miss).
Bortles just joined the Bombers today for game two and in his very first at bat, hit a no doubter homerun to center field to give Battle Creek an early lead.
“I felt good, you know, and getting that first hit out of the way as a Bomber and take the pressure off was big,” Bortles stated about what was going through his mind in the first at bat.
He also had a big RBI in the ninth inning, where the Bombers plated two runs to tie it up after being down.
“I had a lot of confidence going into the end of the season (for Ole Miss) and was hitting the ball really well,” he added. “I knew he was going to throw me that pitch and I saw it deep and drove it up the middle.”
The Bombsquad has their first off day of the season tomorrow before they get rolling again in the second half.
First pitch on Wednesday, July 2nd will be 7:05 verse the Lakeshore Chinooks.
Matt Dacey (both games): 5-8, 2B, 3 R, 2 BB
Colby Bortles: 3-5, HR (1), 3 RBI
Panas (both games): 4-7, 2B, 3 R, SB, 2 BB
Cody Kuzniczci: 2-4, 2B, 1 R, RBI
The Battle Creek Bombers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 21st season of summer collegiate baseball, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 115 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (STL) and Ben Zobrist (TB). For more information, visit http://www.battlecreekbombers.com”