Team Italy beats UnipolSai Bologna 3-2 in exhibition baseball game during festivities at Gianni Falchi

Team Italy beats UnipolSai Bologna 3-2 in exhibition baseball game during festivities at Gianni Falchi
Team Italy remained perfect with its second consecutive exhibition baseball game win by defeating UnipolSai Fortitudo Bologna 3-2 on Tuesday, June 14, 2022

After defeating San Marino 4-1 last month, Team Italy continued its winning ways with a 3-2 victory over UnipolSai Fortitudo Bologna on Tuesday, June 14, 2022 at Stadio Gianni Falchi, where youth players shagged baseballs earlier in the day during batting practice and were later rewarded with autographs from the Italian elite squad.  

On this special exhibition game on Tuesday, June 14, 2022 against host UnipolSai Fortitudo Bologna, Team Italy manager and National Baseball Hall of Famer Mike Piazza showcased two new faces to the hot Azzurri corners with the addition of third baseman A.J. Cipolla and first baseman Tanner Donnels from Hotsand Macerata. The remaining Italian defensive players included starting pitcher Mattia Aldegheri, catcher Ernesto Liberatore, second baseman Mattia Mercuri, shortstop Erik Epifano and outfielders Leo Ferrini, Nico Garbella and Noel Gonzalez.

Starter Christian Scafidi took the mound for Bologna and had an easy 1-2-3 out first inning. Team Italy hurler Mattia Aldegheri matched the opposing pitcher to keep the game scoreless until the bottom of the second inning when UnipolSai Fortitudo Bologna took a 2-0 lead.

The Italians answered in the top of the third inning with three runs of their own. After surrendering two hits to Erik Epifano and Noel Gonzalez, Bologna reliever Maurizio Andretta walked Tanner Donnels to load the bases for Mattia Mercuri. The former Atlanta Braves prospect delivered a three-run double to ultimately give Team Italy the 3-2 win. Excellent pitching from Team Italy reliever Gabriele Quattrini and the Bologna trio of Filippo Crepaldi, Murilo Gouvea and Alex Bassani kept the late innings scoreless.

Team Italy now prepares for its final exhibition game against Parma Clima at Stadio Nino Cavalli on Wednesday, June 29, 2022. Then the Azzurri baseball squad is off to Milan from July 2-7, 2022 to prepare for Haarlem Week in the Netherlands from July 8-15, 2022. Forza #Italia!

by Roberto Angotti

(Photo of Erik Epifano tagging the Bologna runner at second base after an accurate throw from catcher Ernesto Liberatore by PhotoBass)