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Kalamazoo Growlers Announce Assistant Coaches

KALAMAZOO, MI – The Kalamazoo Growlers are pleased to announce that Kalamazoo Valley Community College head coach Cody Piechocki will return for his third season as hitting coach. In addition, Gage Jacobs has been hired as pitching coach for the Growlers.

Piechocki, Cody

Hitting Coach Cody Piechocki

Piechocki first season in the Northwoods League was 2013 with the Battle Creek Bombers, where he was an assistant coach. Piechocki was then hired by the Growlers as hitting coach in 2014.

Said Managing Partner Brian Colopy, “We are thrilled to have Coach Piechocki back for his third season. We have a really energetic group of guys and expect cohesiveness with the combined experience of Field Manager Matt Lawson and our new coaches.”

Piechocki is entering his fifth season as head coach of KVCC and his eighth with the program. As an assistant under Bernie Vallier, Piechocki helped the team break numerous school offensive records as well as the school record for wins in 2010 and again in 2012.

The Mattawan native has also been an assistant coach at Kalamazoo College and Mattawan High School. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education – Coaching Emphasis and a Master’s degree in Coaching Sport Performance from Western Michigan University

Jacobs will begin his first season as an assistant coach in 2016, as a member of Drury University’s coaching staff. Scott Nasby is the head coach of the Panthers and also coached Jacobs during his time as a pitcher for Drury.

Jacobs, Gage

Pitching coach Gage Jacobs

The Bolivar, Mo. native comes to the Growlers with a wealth of college pitching experience and accolades.

In high school, Jacobs was a two time all-state selection at Bolivar High School and threw two no-hitters, including one in district finals. Jacobs then pitched at Johnson County Community College in 2012 and 2013, combining for a 2.84 ERA and 108 strikeouts over 90 innings pitched.

He transferred to Drury University for his final two years of eligibility and in two seasons, Jacobs totaled 19 saves which ranks him second all-time at Drury. Jacobs led the Great Lakes Valley Conference with 13 saves as a senior including 51 strikeouts and just eight walks out of the Panthers bullpen.

The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 22-year old summer collegiate 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 140 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 (KC). All league games are viewable via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com.