Grand Slam
Baseball Recaps European Cup
June 13, 2006
Compiled and Copyright © 1997-2006 by Marco Stoovelaar

Opening loss Neptunus in Grosseto
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GROSSETO (Italy) - DOOR Neptunus started this years European Champions' Cup-tournament in Grosseto (Italy) with a 3-2 loss on Tuesday-afternoon against Italian champion Italeri Fortitudo Bologna. The winning run was scored in the tenth inning.
Last year, Neptunus was dethroned as Cupholder in front of a home crowd by Mr. Cocker HCAW. In the final, HCAW lost 6-5 in eleven innings against Grosseto, that won the Cup and organizes the event this year.

In a quick game, the two starting pitchers dominated in this pitching duel. Lefthander Diegomar Markwell threw nine innings for Neptunus in which he gave up only six basehits. His Dominican colleague Jesús Matos went the distance for Bologna and also gave up six hits, including three by Japanese Yuji Nerei. But Bologna added two more hits in the tenth inning that gave the Italians the victory. Halfway the game, Neptunus held a brief 2-0 lead, but Bologna tied the score in the next at bat and the game had to go into extra innings to force a decision.

Neptunus got no chance whatsoever in the first four innings, as Jesús Matos retired all but one of the 12 batters he faced in that span. The righthander only gave up a lead-off single to Yuji Nerei in the second inning, but then the next batter grounded into a double play.
In the fifth, Neptunus got some good contact off the Dominican, got the help of the Italian centerfielder, but also ran itself out of the inning. Yuji Nerei led off with an infield-hit, then moved on a nice bunt-single by rookie Lennart Koster. Nerei was then forced out on a grounder by Jurriaan Korff and Matos recovered by striking out next batter Melfried Comenencia (who struckout three times). But then Jeffrey Arends drove the ball into centerfield, where Diego Bonci made an error, enabling Koster and Korff to open the score en Arends to reach second base. Jeroen Sluijter then singled to deep short on which Arends reached third base and was given the hold-signal by 3B Coach Steve Janssen. However, Arends didn't pick up his coach and went too far. When he turned back he was too late, as Bologna short stop Jorge Nuñez had fielded the ball and thrown it to experience third baseman Giovanni Pantaleoni, who tagged out Arends to end the inning

. Bologna answered with two runs in the sixth inning to tie the score. With one out, Giovanni Pantaleoni singled and moved on a grounder by Davide Dallospedale. Kelli Ramos, one of three Dominicans on the Bologna-roster, then reached on an infield-hit, bringing Pantaleoni to third base. Next, Diegomar Markwell pitched around powerhitter and former pro Claudio Liverziani, who walked and loaded the bases. But with two outs and a full count, next batter Stefano Landuzzi singled into rightfield, resulting in two runs and a tie score. The inning ended with a force play-grounder by Matteo Dall'Olio.

In the seventh inning, Yuji Nerei led off for Neptunus for the third time with a basehit, but two strikeouts and a force play-grounder ended the at bat. In the eighth, Johnny Balentina singled with two outs, but stranded at first base. Neptunus couldn't come back anymore, as Jesús Matos retired the last seven batters he faced.
Bologna also reached first base twice in the last three regular innings. In the eighth, Davide Dallospedale walked with one out and in the ninth inning, Matteo Dall'Olio singled with one out, but both stranded.

In the tenth inning, Martijn Nijhoff came on in relief for Diegomar Markwell, who had thrown 131 pitches in his nine innings. Jorge Nuñez led off with a groundout, but then next batter Giovanni Pantaleoni hit the ball through the legs of first baseman Jeffrey Arends for an error, that would result in the winning run. Next batter Davide Dallospedale brought Pantaleoni into scoring position with a single. On the eighth delivery by Nijhoff, Catcher Kelli Ramos followed with a single into deep centerfield that enabled Pantaleoni to score from second base and give Bologna a 3-2 victory.

The next game for DOOR Neptunus is scheduled for Wednesday-afternoon against T&A San Marino.
(June 13)

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Last Update: June 13, 2006
Copyright © 1997-2006 Marco Stoovelaar.