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Columbus Pirates Win Indianapolis 25+ Labor Day Tournament

By Steve LaMontia, Director of MSBL 

The Columbus (Ohio) Pirates won the Indianapolis 25+ MSBL Regional at Grand Park in Westfield over Labor Day weekend. The tournament was hosted by the Indiana Baseball League, John DeCosta president.  The Pirates were a perfect 5-0 in the nine team tournament as they knocked off the Fort Wayne Jackers in the Championship game by the score of 10-5. The Jackers reached the final game by defeating the Cincinnati Meridians 15-10. The Pirates defeated the Lexington Baseball Club 8-4 with four runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to break a 4-4 tie in their semi-final game. 

In the championship game the Pirates trailed 4-1 but tied the game in the bottom of the third inning on a Josh Campanella two run single and an Andrew Davis sacrifice fly.  The Jackers took the lead 5-4 going to the bottom of the sixth inning when the Pirates took the lead for good. Andrew Nash had a RBI single, then veteran Ron "Moose" Allen had a two out, two strike RBI single to left giving the Pirates a 6-5 lead.  The eighth inning was good again for the Pirates when Charlie Wrightsel had a RBI double, Allen added a RBI single and Andy Grillo had a RBI single to make the final score 10-5.  Allen led the Pirates with three hits. Campanella, Wrightsel, Nash and Nate Campbell had two hits apiece.

Wrightsel tossed six innings of relief in the championship game.  He only gave up two hits and one earned run.  Wrightsel was awarded the MVP of the tournament as he went 11 for 19 at the plate.  He also caught two games and had the great pitching effort in the championship game.

It was the 15th straight season that the Columbus Pirates have played in a Labor Day Regional.  They played in Indianapolis the first 11 years.  They traveled to Baltimore in 2013 and then to Atlanta the past two Labor Day weekends.  The Pirates return to Indianapolis was a success in 2016.

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