Team Italy baseball ambassador Alessandro Maestri signs with Sydney Blue Sox

Having played in four continents during his globetrotting career, 33-year-old Alessandro Maestri was the first Italian-born-and-developed pitcher signed by Major League Baseball (Chicago Cubs, 2006). Although he managed to strike out Orlando Cabrera, Matt Holliday and Eric Chavez during a 2009 Cubs Spring Training game, Alessandro Maestri never made his MLB debut in a regular season game during his five year minor league stint with the Chicago Cubs organization. The 2007 and 2008 Minor League Baseball All-Star was sought after internationally. Alessandro Maestri was recruited to pitch Down Under for the Brisbane Bandits during the 2011-12 Australian Baseball League (ABL) season. As the workhorse of the Brisbane Bandits pitching staff, he led his team in wins (4) and proved to be one of the best pitchers in the league. Alessandro Maestri finished third in the ABL in innings pitched (63.2) and in strikeouts (53), fourth in the ABL in WHIP (1.16) and sixth in the ABL in ERA (3.25). In round eight of the regular season, he earned the ABL Pitcher of the Week award after pitching a stellar complete game two-hitter against the Canberra Cavalry and was later crowned with the prestigious ABL Fan Choice award. 

Back by popular demand, Alessandro Maestri will make his return to the ABL, but this time around he will play for the Sydney Blue Sox. Current Sydney manager Tony Harris, who coached in the minor leagues from 1992-2006 for the Los Angeles Dodgers and served as an international scout for the New York Mets and Pittsburgh Pirates knows what he has got in Alessandro Maestri. He said, "Alessandro has pitched at the highest of all international levels including a very successful career in the NPB for Orix Buffaloes and the KBO. We are really excited to have him as one of our main starting pitchers this year, a tough competitor and a great person that only wants success for Sydney this season." The 2018-19 Sydney Blue Sox homestand kicks off with a four game series against Geelong-Korea beginning November 15, 2018. For more information on the upcoming 2018-19 ABL season, visit the Sydney Blue Sox website. Forza #Italia! #LetsMakeItHappen

by Roberto Angotti