Azzurri manager Gilberto Gerali has assembled 29 of his finest players to venture south to Messina, Sicily for Team Italy Spring Training from March 3-18, 2018. In cooperation with the University of Messina and the Centro Universitario Sportivo, Federazione Italiana Baseball Softball (FIBS) president Andrea Marcon and vice president Fabrizio Del Robbio have worked diligently to find the optimal location for Team Italy to train in a temperate climate. Stadio Primo Nebiolo, home to the 1988 and 2009 Baseball World Cup, will be the battleground for two weekend series of games where the Italians will play against Germany and the Czech Republic during 2018 Spring Training. In his efforts to prepare Team Italy this spring in Messina, skipper Gilberto Gerali will be supported by bench coach John Cortese, pitching coach Rolando Cretis, coaches Alberto D’Auria, Marco Nanni, Claudio Vecchi, Augusto Medina, conditioning trainers Gianni Natale and Gino Targhetta, physiotherapist Nicolo’ Fagandini, and team manager Vincenzo Mignola.
2018 Team Italy Spring Training invitees include: Filippo Agretti (Fortitudo Bologna), Milvio Andreozzi (Nettuno Baseball City), Alex Bassani (Fortitudo Bologna), Federico Celli (Rimini), Filippo Crepaldi (Fortitudo Bologna), Leonardo Colagrossi (Nettuno 2), Nicolo’ Clemente (Fortitudo Bologna), Ludovico Coveri (DSL Phillies Red), Alessandro Deotto (Parma 1949), Erick Epifano (San Marino), Diego Fabiani (Cervignano ASD), Nicola Garbella (Aosta Bugs), Robel Estiwal Garcia Rodriguez (Fortitudo Bologna), Federico Giordani (Nettuno Baseball City-Nettuno 2), Alessandro Grimaudo (Fortitudo Bologna), Alessandro Maestri (Torre Pedrera Falcons), Mattia Mercuri (Nettuno Baseball City), Giulio Monello (Rangers Redipuglia), Yuri Morellini (Rimini-Lions), Luca Panerati (Fortitudo Bologna), Andrea Pizziconi (Fortitudo Bologna), Sebastiano Poma (Parma 1949-Collecchio BC), Michele Pomponi (Oltretorrente-Parma 1949), Yomel Rivera (Parma 1949-Collecchio BC), Alex Sambucci (Parma 1949), Claudio Scotti (Cali Roma XIII), Valeria Simone (San Marino), Mario Trinci (Nettuno Baseball City), and Alessandro Vaglio (Fortitudo Bologna). It is hopeful that Sicily will play host to Team Italy now and in the future so that the Azzurri have a year-round training ground to ultimately prepare for the #2020Olympics. Forza #Italia! #LetsMakeItHappen
by Roberto Angotti