Once again, the Oneonta Outlaws are New York Collegiate Baseball League champions.
Oneonta polished off a two-game sweep of the Hornell Dodgers with a 6-1 victory Monday night that clinched the best-of-3 NYCBL championship series at Hornell.
The Outlaws won the NYCBL in 2011 but couldn’t defend it last season as they switched to the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League.
When local businessman Gary Laing bought the Outlaws’ brand from former owners Keith Rogers and Dan Scaring in December, he moved the team back into the NYCBL.
The 2013 edition of the Outlaws had a heavy local flavor. Oneonta High graduates Chris Pindar, Sean Getman and Mike Calkins – all members of the Oneonta High squad that won a Class B state championship in 2012 – were on the roster. The team was managed by OHS baseball coach and athletic director Joe Hughes and had former OHS standout Lance Ratchford as an assistant coach.
“I think it does,” Hughes said by cell phone Monday night when asked if the local touch to this year’s team made it more special. “Anytime you win a championship, it’s special, but when you have a local owner, local coaches and local players, it had an Oneonta flavor and that made it more special.
“The Oneonta community was awesome, the attendance was awesome and the fan-base was awesome,” he continued. “Even tonight, we had a lot of fans here. When they were introducing the starting lineups, there were more cheers for our guys than the Hornell side.”
Including the playoffs, Oneonta finished with a 29-16 record.
On Monday, winning pitcher Brandon Agar, and relievers Zach Moreau and Brandon Stephens combined to scatter eight hits, and were backed by an Outlaws defense that played error-free baseball. Offensively, Pindar, Jake Levine and Stephens had two hits apiece, and Oneonta benefited from three Dodgers errors.