San Marino is the champion of Italian Baseball Series 2021. For the first time in its history, San Marino has won the Italian Baseball Series and qualified for next year’s European Championship.
This victory was a historic event not only for San Marino but also for Italy as it heralds a return to international competition after an absence of 26 years.
The victory was achieved with plenty of hard work and dedication from all players during practices and games that led up to this historic game on August 16th, 2021 at Giuseppe Sinigaglia Stadium in Rimini.
San Marino fought off a tough Italian opponent and went on to win 12-3 in 4 innings.
Veteran right-hander John Hemmingson Gonzaga earned two wins in the best-of-five series, including the clincher. It took San Marino four games to take down three-time defending champions Fortitudo Bologna, 12-3, to win the best-of-five Italian Baseball Series 2021.
The first game was a decisive loss (-7) for San Marino that put their backs against the wall down 0-1 in the series. But they bounced back with a 6 run victory (+6) behind an RBI double by Enzo Di Piazza and another RBI double by Manuel Coletti in the second inning that gave them a lead they would never relinquish.
After putting up a solid effort in the first game, San Marino starter Andrea Di Giuseppe couldn’t get through three innings and was relieved by southpaw Daniele Perazzolo who pitched 4 shutout innings with 9 strikeouts to keep his team afloat. Michael Mancinelli followed with 1 scoreless inning of relief to earn the save.
Veteran 3B-1B Enzo Di Piazza led the way offensively with two hits and an RBI while Manuel Coletti contributed with two doubles, 2 RBI’s and 2 runs scored. Mavelli Brignola went 3-for-5 with an RBI in defeat for Fortitudo Bologna.
The second game was another decisive loss (-5) for Fortitudo Bologna that tied the series at 1-1. This time, San Marino put up a solid effort with 10 runs (+10) behind 3 home runs from Catanese brothers Marco and Lido.
With Marco hitting a two run shot in the 5th inning to give his team a 2 run lead after five innings before Lido hit a grand slam homerun to extend their lead 8-0. The visitors finally got on the board in the 9th thanks to an RBI double from Alessandro Simonelli but it was too little too late as San Marino had already built too big of a lead for them to overcome.
San Marino starter Manuel Fornaciari earned the win pitching 5 innings and striking out 9 with his fastball that reached 94 mph. While reliever Vincenzo Dell’Anna struck out 1 batter in an inning of work to earn the save.
LHP Marco Lorenzo took the loss for Fortitudo Bologna but wasn’t involved in any decision as he only went two innings before giving way to RHP Vito Fraboni who pitched 4 innings while striking out 3 batters.
Catanese brothers Marco (2-for-3, 2B, HR, 2 RBI, R) and Lido (1-for-4, HR, 3 RBI) led the way offensively with three hits each while Alessandro Simonelli had a hit and an RBI in defeat for Fortitudo Bologna.
The third game was a decisive victory (+8) for San Marino that tied the series at 2-2. San Marino went ahead 7-0 behind an RBI double from Manuel Coletti and a 3 run triple from Mavelli Brignola in the 4th inning.
The visitors got on the board in the 6th inning thanks to an RBI single by Alessandro Simonelli but it was too little too late as they had already lost their momentum following two big innings by San Marino.
San Marino starter Lido Catanese turned in another solid effort with 6 shutout innings and 8 strikeouts while reliever Daniele Perazzolo followed and struck out 2 batters in 2 innings of work. Veteran RHP Tiago Da Silva followed with 1 inning of scoreless relief for his third win in the series while reliever Andrea Di Giuseppe struck out 2 batters in a perfect 9th inning.
Light-hitting 3B Maurizio Siero took the loss, going 1-for-4 at the dish, as San Marino starter Lido Catanese shut down Fortitudo Bologna’s bats by striking out 8 batters over 6 innings while giving up three hits and one unearned run.
Veteran outfielder Marco Carpino led the way offensively for Fortitudo Bologna with a pair of hits despite their team being on the losing end but Alessandro Simonelli had the only RBI in defeat.
In the fourth and final game that would decide who wins the series, San Marino took yet another decisive victory (+7) to win their first ever Italian Baseball Series title.
San Marino went ahead for good by scoring three runs in the 4th inning, two of which were scored on wild pitches with RBI doubles from Manuel Coletti and Mavelli Brignola , while building a 6-0 lead after six innings thanks to an RBI double from Lido Catanese .
Fortitudo Bologna finally got on the board in the 7th inning when Alessandro Simonelli scored off a groundout but it was too little too late as San Marino proved to be too dominant at all stages of this series.
Despite their team being on the losing end, Alessandro Simonelli finished the final game 2-for-3 with an RBI while Catanese brothers Marco (1-for-4) and Lido (2-for-5, BB, 2B, RBI) led the way offensively for San Marino who scored 7 runs on 8 hits while being helped by 6 walks issued by Fortitudo Bologna pitchers.
San Marino starter Lido Catanese pitched 5 innings before giving way to RHP Roberto Giannotti who struck out 4 batters in 2 innings of relief while reliever Andrea Di Giuseppe came in and pitched a perfect 9th inning for his second save. On the other end veteran RHP Tiago Da Silva took the loss despite pitching 6 innings, striking out 7 and allowing 3 runs on 5 hits.
Marco Carpino (2-for-4, RBI) led the way offensively for Fortitudo Bologna with a pair of hits while Alessandro Simonelli had an RBI single in defeat as San Marino win their first ever Italian Baseball Series title. Manuel Fornaciari went six scoreless innings on the mound while striking out 8
Veteran RHP Tiago Da Silva earned another win pitching six innings and giving up three hits while striking out four batters to reach 11 strikeouts in this series. RHP Andrea Di Giuseppe followed by striking out one batter in 1 inning of work to earn a hold before veteran LHP Vito Frasca finished the team’s 4-1 victory out of the bullpen.