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Five contend for title in Machine Pitch Invitational

SoVaNow.com / July 17, 2013
Players, coaches and families will swing through South Hill this weekend to see the South Hill Dixie Youth Machine Pitch Invitational.

Scottsburg, Emporia, Lunenburg, Brunswick and South Hill will compete in the tournament, which opens Friday at 5 p.m. at Parker Park. The invitational will give machine pitch ballplayers a good taste of what is to come in 2013, as Dixie Youth Baseball moves to make the division open to state and world series play.

Ask most anyone who has seen a machine pitch game and they will tell you that these young guys can play. The pitching machine sets a speed of 40 mph on delivery and the kids really do provide some excitement on offense and defense.

Eddie Smiley, President of South Hill Dixie Youth Baseball, said he and others are pleased that the invitational will take place in South Hill.

“I asked the State Director could we hold this tournament and he said, ‘yes’, so we are very happy to put this tournament on. It gives the kids an opportunity to see what play is like after the district tournament.

“These kids play some great ball now, but add in the mix a state and world series — I think you will see play go to another level, because I think the district tournament will take on more meaning,” Smiley stated.

The Machine Pitch District Tournament took place in Clarksville on June 21. Machine Pitch has been a part of the Dixie Youth experience for 10 years now.

The division has seen steady and positive growth throughout the years. Smiley requested the opportunity for South Hill to hold this invitational.

Organizers said the tournament would have something for everyone. Smiley noted that face painting, and the sale of food and treats that kids and adults can enjoy will be available.

Souvenir bats and custom sports apparel will also be sold as well as the availability of professional photography.

“We are really looking forward to hosting this tournament and can’t wait for local baseball fans to see these kids in action,” Smiley concluded.



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