Growlers Win Pitcher’s Duel Against Chinooks
MEQUON, Wi. – A dominant performance on the mound from Kyle Virbitsky led the Kalamazoo Growlers to their second straight 3-1 victory, this one coming over the Lakeshore Chinooks.
Virbitsky pitched seven scoreless innings one the mound for the Growlers, his second consecutive start of seven scoreless innings on the mound. He now leads the team in innings pitched with 49 and ERA among starting pitchers with 2.75.
Kalamazoo was able to push a run across in the fourth inning off of Chinook starter Austin Jones who had a nice night himself with the run in the fourth being the only mark against him. Jordan Bowersox, Niko Kavadas and Cayman Richardson all singled in the fourth inning with Bowersox coming home to score.
The Growler added two insurance runs in the eighth inning after Jones had left the game. With Jason Sullivan on third base, Bowersox lifted a two-strike fly ball to right field scoring Sullivan. Kavadas would extend the inning and score two batters later on an RBI hit from Sam Crail to make the score 3-0.
The only run for Lakeshore came in the eighth inning off of reliever Luke Boyd. The final line for Boyd was one inning, with two hits and one run.
With normal closer Mason Shinabery unavailable due to pitching back-to-back days Andrew Belcik was called upon in a close game in the ninth. Belcik recorded his first save of the season in the ninth inning despite walking the first two men of the inning.
Jason Sullivan extended his hit streak in the game with a double down the left field line in the eighth inning. It was the 17th straight game with a hit for Sullivan tying him for the Growlers franchise record with Nick Fletcher from 2015.
Bowersox led the way for the offense going 2-for-3 scoring once and driving in a run. He also made an acrobatic diving catch down the left field line in the eighth inning to help preserve the lead.
The Growlers look for their fourth straight victory in the final game before the All-Star break tomorrow against the Chinooks with Tyler Drabick on the mound.
The Kalamazoo Growlers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Entering its 25th anniversary season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 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, 190 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.growlersbaseball.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Growlers as your favorite team.