KALAMAZOO, MI – Pitching was once again the question mark for the Kalamazoo Growlers in game one of their double header against the Battle Creek Bombers. Kalamazoo's offense was able to do their part by putting up 10 runs in the game, but the Bombers were able to get seven runs in the final three innings to come back and defeat the Growlers by a score of 12-10.
Both offenses got out to nice starts this afternoon as they were each able to get on the board in the first inning. Battle Creek took advantage of a Growler error in the first inning to get on the board. New Growler, Jay Smith (KVCC), collected his first RBI of the summer when he brought Matt Lloyd (Iowa Western) home to tie the game at one.
Eric Gilgenbach connected on his first of two home runs for Battle Creek in the second to take a 2-1 lead. Nick Podkul followed the home run up in the following inning with a two-RBI base hit that brought Storm Joop and Dean Miller across the plate.
The third and fourth frames were when Kalamazoo attempted to take this game over. The Growlers had eight players score in the two innings and looked to be in control. Lloyd got things going with a base hit that plated Connor Smith. Nick Hutchins (Southern Illinois) gave the Growlers their first lead of the game shortly after with a three-run home run that brought Lloyd and Connor Kopach (Southern Illinois) in to score. Connor and Jay Smith, as well as Lloyd, each pick up RBIs the next inning to build Kalamazoo's lead up to 9-4.
Battle Creek's offense was able to take off in the final three innings of this game to give them a come from behind win. Seven runs were scored for the Bombers in the three innings, including Gilgenbach's second home run, to give Battle Creek the lead once again.
Brandon Gomez attempted to get Kalamazoo back in the game with a two-out solo home run in the ninth, but it was too little, too late as the Battle Creek Bombers were able to hold on and win the first game of today's double header by a score of 12-10.
Game two of the double header will be played this evening at C.O. Brown Stadium in Battle Creek. First pitch between the Growlers and Bombers is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. EDT.
The Kalamazoo Growlers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 23rd 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 150 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (CHC). 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 and set the Growlers as your favorite team.