Wisconsin Rapids unleashes an offensive barrage on Kalamazoo to take game one of the series.
Wisconsin Rapids, Wis. – The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (21-27, 6-7 2nd half) defeated the Kalamazoo Growlers (30-19, 6-8 2nd half) by double-digits 13-3. The cranberry and gold scored 13 runs on 14 hits while the Growlers were held to three runs on nine hits. Wisconsin Rapids started the scoring show in the second as Ethan Stringer (Louisville) was hit a by pitch thrown by Tyler Drabick with the bases loaded. Steven Rivas (Long Beach State) scored to make it 1-0 Rafters. Kalamazoo tied it up at one in the fifth with an RBI base hit from Jason Sullivan. The Growlers took the lead an inning later with a two-run bomb to left from Jordan Bowersox.
The Rafters responded in their part of the sixth plating six runs on five hits. Brody Wofford (UCF) drove in one via an RBI sacrifice fly to right. Ethan Stringer delivered a triple to score two. Stringer then scored himself off a wild pitch from Growlers reliever Jeff Burch. Jake Dunham (Northern Illinois) capped off the inning with a two-run double as it was 7-3 Rafters after six innings.
The cranberry and gold weren’t finished as six more runs crossed in the eighth. Dunham collected an RBI single, Matt Schmidt (Michigan) worked a bases-loaded walk, Jordan Wiley (Kalamazoo College) was hit by a pitch with the bases still loaded while Wofford cleared the bags with a three-run double to break the game wide open 13-3.
Chandler Brierley (1-1, 9.77 ERA) earned the win by finishing the top of the sixth before the Rafters took the lead. Jeff Burch (2-3, 4.65 ERA) suffered the loss allowing five earned runs in two-thirds of an inning. The Rafters conclude the series with Kalamazoo tomorrow with first pitch at 7:05 pm CT from Witter Field.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Now in 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.raftersbaseball.com 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.