Rafters Sweep Growlers on way to 14th Straight Win
Starter J.P. Stevenson tosses eight scoreless innings in the win
Wisconsin Rapids, Wis. – It was a strong start by pitcher J.P. Stevenson (2-0) and the long ball that propelled the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (16-1) to their 14th straight win, coming against the Kalamazoo Growlers (4-13) from Homer Stryker Field in a 7-0 game.
Offensively, the Rafters were once again led by the long ball in the middle innings. However, the game’s first run came on an RBI single by Ryan Stekl for the Rafters in the first inning, scoring Nick Anderson to give the Rafters and early 1-0 lead.
In the top of the fifth, Anderson got ahold of a 1-0 pitch, driving it to left field for a two-run blast to give the Rafters a 3-0 lead. Two batters later after a Dustin Woodcock walk, Josh Rehwaldt followed Anderson’s homer with a drive of his own over the right field fence, giving Wisconsin Rapids a 5-0 lead in the fifth.
The top of the sixth provided more offense for the Rafters when Jake Guenther and Charlie McConnell led off with a pair of base knocks. With two in scoring position, Anderson singled back up the middle to score both runners, pushing the Rafters to a 7-0 lead. Stevenson shut out the Growlers order through eight, striking out three batters. The crafty left-hander threw 86 pitched, 61 of them for strikes.
The Rafters were led by Anderson in the batter’s box. The sophomore finished with a career-high four runs batted in with two runs scored. Luke Schaefer (0-1) is tagged with the loss for the Growlers.
Wisconsin Rapids heads home to take on the Wisconsin Woodchucks on Saturday night. With a 6:05 pm first pitch, Bull’s Eye Credit Union presents Turn back the Clock Night. Rapids Twins Moe Hill Midwest League Triple Crown Bobblehead and guest appearance by Elmore “Moe” Hill is set to take place. Coverage of the game can be found on WFHR 1320 AM or WFHR.com, the Rafters Radio Network at 5:50 pm.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate 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, more than 170 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit http://northwoodsleague.com/wisconsin-rapids-rafters/ or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Rafters as your favorite team.