KALAMAZOO, MI – Even with paws in the park and fans in the stands, the Kalamazoo Growlers let the leash go on the I-94 rivalry against the Battle Creek Bombers. The Bombers will not move on to the South Division playoffs, but they will be awarded their 11th win straight.
Battle Creek’s bats ignited early in the top of the first inning on a Jordan Swiss sac fly to allow a 1-0 lead. Kalamazoo answered back with a run of their own in the bottom of the second scoring off a wild pitch to tie the game back at one.
It wasn’t long before the Bombers took their lead back with a three run Mason Jones home run to left field. With a scoreless half inning from the Growlers, the lead continued for the Bombers.
Caleb Henderson hit a home run of his own in the top of the fifth inning making the score 5-1. That would be the final runs of the night solidifying Battle Creek’s 11th straight win.
Kalamazoo’s defense picked it up following the reign of runs from Battle Creek. The infield saw a new face as pitcher Luke Boyd made himself known at second base. Baylor product Boyd aided in a prevented stolen base from Alex Kuster in the top of the eighth inning.
The Growlers’ bullpen also contributed to stifle the Bombers’ offense. Braydon Nelson, Adam Wheaton, and Joe Boyle were able to throw five strikeouts collectively. All 3,321 of Kalamazoo’s attending fans were able to witness Boyle throw pitches ranging from 90 to 101 miles per hour.
Starting Bombers pitcher, Amani Godfrey, collected the win reaching a record of 5-4 on the season. Godfrey pitched 4.0 innings allowing only one run throughout and collecting six strikeouts.
Fortunately for Kalamazoo, this loss did not interfere with their playoff spot. In only their 5th year as an organization, the Growlers will make their first playoff appearance on Monday, August 13th. They will either head to the second-half champions, the Kenosha Kingfish, or first-half champions, the Madison Mallards.
Battle Creek will be back at Homer Stryker Field tomorrow, Sunday, August 12th at 3:05pm to continue the fight for the I-94 Cup.
You can also watch Monday’s playoff game at the Kalamazoo Applebee’s on Gull Road at 7:30pm. First pitch will be at 8:05pm ET. Come to cheer on your record-breaking Growlers team!
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.