Kalamazoo, Mich. – The Kalamazoo Growlers put on a show on opening night in front of a sellout crowd at Homer Stryker, taking down the Kokomo Jackrabbits 14-0.
Eamon Horwedel got his tenth start as a Growler in his fourth season with Kalamazoo and showed out. Horwedel gained his 14th K-Zoo win by going seven scoreless innings, giving up just four hits and striking out six.
The Growlers struck first in the bottom half of the second as with runners at the corners Ben Bach stole second while the throw went into center field. Joey Winters came home to score. Kalamazoo slightly stalled offensively for the next three innings before Ben Bach brought home two in the sixth off an RBI ground-rule double to left. Bach would come home to score later in the inning on an error and it was 4-0 Growlers.
Kalamazoo then put up another crooked number in the seventh. After nine runs in the fourth inning on Thursday against Battle Creek, the Growlers put up seven in the bottom of the seventh vs Kokomo. Four walks, a hit-by-pitch, and three runs set up the bases loaded for Luke Mitchell. Mitchell, still looking for his first base hit as a Growler launched one over the Willis Law sign in left for a grand slam, putting the Growlers on top by double digits, 11-0. This is now the fourth straight game where the Growlers have had a four-plus run inning.
Kalamazoo would add on three more in the eighth and Holland Townes shut it down in the final two frames to give K-Zoo their fourth consecutive Willis Law win.
The Growlers and Jackrabbits will battle it out once again on Saturday night at Homer Stryker Field. First pitch is set for 6:35 p.m. and can be watched live on ESPN+.