Connecticut North, 35+ Division
Submitted by Frank Daniele, Pirates manager
After two consecutive runner-up finishes, the Portland Pirates entered the 2022 season with a mission to not only get back to the finals but to win the championship. Most of the players returned from 2021 as they also welcomed the addition of three new players including catcher and 2022 All-Star Micky Ely, who led the league with four triples and also led the team with runs scored and a .419 batting average.
Pre-season training started in January, which enabled the team to get an early start on throwing programs, hitting, and fielding. This proved to be most helpful as the team started the season by sweeping the Opening Day games versus Ledyard and finished the regular season with a 17-5 record, the best in franchise history.
In the playoffs, Portland swept Ledyard in the First Round and won a two out of three game Semi-Finals series with Clinton. 2022 All-Star Mike Rigdon pitched two innings of relief in game one and then came back the next day to pitch all seven innings in the deciding game three.
This set up Hebron-Portland Part III for the championship. Unfortunately, this year went the same way as the previous two years with Hebron winning the finals.
For Portland’s other 2022 All-Star selections, Ryan Eriksson led the team on the bump with eight wins and was second in the league in innings pitched. Don Fodaski was the table-setter as he batted leadoff, was fifth in the league in runs scored, and played a quality center field.
The team will regroup in the off-season and look forward to 2023 with their sights set on taking the final step in their journey!