The Fayette County Baseball League has always welcomed teams from outside county lines such as longtime member the Carmichaels Copperheads as well as Mitch’s Bail Bonds Magicians who are based in Charleroi.
Add Washington to the mix as the league takes on a sixth team for the 2021 season, which is underway.
“It’s always good to have new teams,” said FCBL president Ryan Encapera, who is Mitch’s manager. “We’ve played with five teams the last couple years. Adding another team is beneficial in a lot of ways.”
The only downside for Washington is its distance from other teams in the league.
“We tried to get a field that was more local for the league but it ended up the only field they could get was McGuffey Community Park which is near Claysville,” Encapera explained. “It’s a long trip so we’ve got to be creative with the schedule to try to help them out. We’ll work it out.”
Encapera is happy that the league got the 2020 season in despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
“That was one of the best victories we could have was to pull off a quick 12-game schedule and have a competitive playoff where every game was pretty close,” Encapera said, “and we didn’t have any COVID issues so that was a good thing.”
Along with Mitch’s, Carmichaels and Washington, the league still has defending champion Masontown entering just its second year, the Mill Run Millers and the Fayette Raiders. The league has added a few games to its 2021 slate.
“This year we have a 15-game schedule,” Encapera said. “We discussed it and that’s where it came out at. I really would’ve liked a few more but this gives us some freedom to deal with rainouts.”
In addition to Encapera, managers for the league remain the same for the returning squads with Dickie Krause for the Copperheads, Anthony Dellapenna for the Raiders, John Palmer for Masontown and Ray Orndorff for the Millers.
“I’m not sure who Washington’s manager is but I know they’ve been represented by Seth Burgdolt at the meetings,” Encapera said.
The league is off and running for a 47th consecutive season.
“Getting through last year, the way all of us pulled together to handle that situation, I think made us even stronger,” Encapera said.