Team Italy U23 manager Alberto D'Auria looks forward to 2023 baseball competition

Team Italy U23 manager Alberto D'Auria looks forward to 2023 baseball competition
After earning the bronze medal in the U23 European Baseball Championship last year, Team Italy manager Alberto D'Auria plans to build for the future with an eye on the 2023 Euros

Considering last season the U23 Team Italy baseball squad was growing from the ground up, the next generation of players promise to mature into budding stars. Team Italy manager Alberto D'Auria plans on fostering their growth and development this year so they will blossom into 2023 European Baseball Champions. With the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Germany representing the European continent at the U23 World Cup in Taipei, Taiwan, the Italians will have to sit their hands in 2022 and plan for the next opportunity to compete.

The young and talented Team Italy U23 baseball squad narrowly missed the chance to qualify for the World Cup competition. However, manager Alberto D'Auria remains optimistic in his team's chances to make amends in 2023. He said, "In regards to the last European Baseball Championship, I think we played well. The 1-0 defeat we suffered to Germany in the semifinals took away our possibility of reaching the finals and the World Cup, but the following day we redeemed ourselves by winning the bronze medal. Despite the need to improve, it was a positive experience overall. We just ran out of time and opportunities to work together as a team in 2021 due to the pandemic which impacted our program and prohibited us from scheduling practices.

Team Italy U23 manager Alberto D'Auria has made up for lost time in 2022. He has already put his players through a three-day series of physical testing in Rome. He commented, “We started with athletic evaluation tests in conjunction with the Olympic Training Center in Acqua Acetosa, We invited about forty athletes from the U18 category on up to the 22 year olds who played for us last season. I found this to be a beautiful group. Both the veterans and the new guys fit in and worked well together with a lot of enthusiasm and the right attitude. Considering it was their first gathering of the season, they demonstrated their strength athletically on the tests."

Although there are no scheduled competitions for the Team Italy U23 squad this year, the players have their eyes on the prize in the 2023 European Baseball Championship and the ensuing 2024 World Cup. Skipper Alberto D'Auria said, "This year we will have practices, midweek games and work closely with the senior squad so that we can grow into champions. We will prepare for the 2023 season by working on developing the necessary technical skills to become a better team." Forza #Italia!

by Roberto Angotti

(Photo of Team Italy and France battling in the 2021 U23 European Baseball Championship in Verona by Lynx Prod.)