Latest News

Published On: March 9th, 2015

KALAMAZOO, MI – The waiting is over for fans of the Kalamazoo Growlers. This past Saturday the Growlers held their inaugural Hot Stove Event at the Radisson Plaza Hotel and Suites of Kalamazoo, where they unveiled the new mascot’s name.20150307-IMG_5699 copy

Fans voted the on the new name this past December in the Growlers Name Your Mascot 2.0 contest. Voters were given the options of Beary, Blooper or Porter. After over 2,500 submissions it was clear who the fan favorite was. With an overwhelming amount of votes, Porter was chosen as the Growlers new face of the team.

Fans got their first glimpse of Porter at the Hot Stove event, where he sported a new wardrobe and brand new attitude. Fans were also able to interact with the new blue bear and receive some of the very first autographs from him.

The team was forced to change the mascot’s name from the beloved Barlee this off-season due to a trademark dispute with Minor League Baseball and the Hillsboro Hopps, the class A short season affiliate of the Arizone Diamondbacks located in Hillsboro, Oregon.

20150307-IMG_5510 copy

Also in attendance for the event was former Detroit Tiger and World Series Champion, Darrell Evans. Evans, who helped the Tigers to win the 1984 World Series, spoke to the crowd about how special being back in Michigan is to him.  Evans remarked “I played on great teams, but when I got here I always felt like I made it to the major leagues and it was because of you fans.”

Darrell signed autographs for fans throughout the event, taking his time to answer questions and fulfill any special requests. He even let some of the younger fans hold and wear his 1984 World Series ring.

New manager Travis Wade also addressed the crowd on his excitement for the season and Executive Vice President Brian Colopy thanked the fans for the success of last season and talked about the upcoming season as well.

A new playoff format was announced which now allows eight instead of four Northwoods League teams to earn a bid to the playoffs. Colopy also revealed three new players to the Growlers roster for 2015. Kory Young, Keegan Baar and Brandon Hughes all hailing from Michigan State University will join the Growlers for the upcoming season.

Kalamazoo begins its second season on May 26 at Madison. The Growlers’ home opener comes on May 29 against the Battle Creek Bombers. The full Growlers schedule can be found here. For information on 2015 Growlers season tickets, click here.

The Kalamazoo Growlers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 22nd season of summer collegiate baseball in 2015, 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 120 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 (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (BOS) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League Website.  For more information, visit