Dominican Republic RBI has won the 2016 Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) World Series Softball Championship, earning the country its fourth RBI World Series Softball title and their eighth overall. In its sixth consecutive softball RBI World Series appearance, Dominican Republic RBI defeated defending champions Cleveland Baseball Federation RBI in a 5-3 contest today at the P&G Cincinnati MLB Youth Academy. Cleveland Baseball Federation RBI played in its second consecutive RBI World Series Championship Game and made its city's 22nd RBI World Series apparance, 12 of which have been in softball. Cleveland finished the tournament with a 4-1-2 record.
Dominican Republic designated player Betxy Luciano, 17, was crowned Most Valuable Player of the Softball Championship Game. Luciano slashed a two-run homer in the bottom of the fourth to give her team the lead and later knocked an RBI single to bring the score to 5-3. She finished the game going 2-for-3 with 3 RBIs. This was Luciano's second appearance in the tournament.
The Cincinnati Reds hosted the RBI World Series for the first time in 2016 and will host again in 2017. The softball games were played at the P&G Cincinnati MLB Youth Academy, Mason High School Stadium Mason High School Junior Varsity Field, and Withrow Field, which was one of the fields renovated as part of the 2015 All-Star Legacy effort between MLB and the Reds.
The RBI World Series is the international baseball and softball championship tournament of Major League Baseball's RBI program, which is designed to provide young people from underserved and diverse communities with the opportunity to play baseball and softball, encourage academic success and teach the value of teamwork.
The RBI program is administered by Major League Baseball and has served approximately 2 million young people since its inception. RBI currently serves approximately 230,000 young men and women in over 300 programs established in approximately 200 cities worldwide. MLB and its Clubs have designated more than $40 million worth of resources to the RBI program, and all 30 Clubs support RBI leagues.