Kalamazoo, Mich. – The Kalamazoo Growlers make their debut at home on Friday, as they take on their crosstown rival, the Battle Creek Bom
bers at Homer Stryker Field in the final game of a two-game series. The Growlers (2-1) defeated the Bombers (1-2) on Thursday night in Battle Creek, 5-1. The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters come in to town on Saturday and Sunday, as the Growlers continue their five-game home stand.
Growlers Probable Starters
5/30 vs. Battle Creek: #15 Jacob Post (Ohio State) vs. TBD
5/31 vs. Wisconsin Rapids: #17 Luke Bolka vs. TBD
6/1 vs. Wisconsin Rapids: TBD vs. TBD
Bryant leads Growlers over budding rival
Shane Bryant (Purdue) started for the Growlers on Thursday and pitched a two-hit, one-run gem over six innings to lead the Growlers to their second victory of their inaugural season in the Northwoods League…Bryant has been the only starter to last at least three innings…despite the solid start from Bryant, he didn’t record a strikeout during his outing against the Bombers.
Growlers first victory in franchise history
The Growlers earned their first victory in franchise history on Wednesday in the second game of a doubleheader against the defending Northwoods League, the Madison Mallards…Donnie Eaton (Michigan) picked up the win for the Growlers, tossing two innings of shutout ball as they downed the Mallards, 6-5…Ryan Smoyer (Notre Dame) picked up the first save in Growlers history, striking out three batters over the final two innings.
Clearing the bases
John Rubino (Eastern Michigan) is the current Growlers leader in extra-base hits with two, including a three-run double against Madison in the second game of the double header on Wednesday, leading the Growlers to victory…Rubino’s three RBI also lead the team, and he is the only Growler with more than one RBI in 2014.
First run in team history
Grant Van Putten (Calvin) scored the first run in Growlers history in the first game of the doubleheader on Wednesday, when Brett Sunde (Western Michigan) knocked him in for the team’s first RBI…Van Putten and Spaulding also are the only Growlers to steal a bag this year, each recording one stolen base through the first three games.
Scouting the Bombers
After opening the season with a 10-9 victory over the Green Bay Bullfrogs, the Bombers have now dropped two straight, including a 5-1 loss to the Growlers on Thursday night. David Richards IV (Savannah State) leads the Bombers with four hits and three RBI. Sam Koenig has blasted the only homer for the Bombers so far during the 2014 season.
Scouting the Rafters
The Rafters (1-2) dropped their opener to the other new franchise in the Northwoods League, the Kenosha Kingfish, by the score of 14-0 on Tuesday. The Rafters did pick up their first win of the season against their in-state rival, the Wisconsin Woodchucks, on Thursday 5-4. Erik Payne (Virginia Tech) and Michael Hurwitz (Illinois) lead the Rafters with four hits each. Three other Rafters have also recorded three hits each, including Patrick Ervin, who leads the team with three RBI.