2018 Italian Series

From BR Bullpen

The 2018 Italian Series was won by Bologna, 3 games to 1.


  • Unipolsai Bologna had dominated the regular season at 26-2 (241 R, 83 RA) then swept Nettuno City in the semifinals, 3 games to 0. They easily led the league in offense and were second in fewest runs allowed. Giuseppe Mazzanti (.400/.465/.694) was second in the league in average, OBP and slugging while Osman Marval (.378/.441/.703) led in home runs (9), runs (36), slugging, RBI (31) and total bases. The pitching was multinational with strong performances from Cuban Jorge Martínez (8-1, 1.95, 84 K in 73 2/3 IP), Venezuelan Raúl Rivero (9-0, 2.13, 81 K, 9 BB in 55 IP, the league leader in wins), Brazilian Murilo Gouvea (4-0, 6 Sv, 2.59, 30 K in 24 1/3 IP, league leader in saves) and Venezuelan Antonio Noguera (2-1, 2.62, 38 K in 34 1/3 IP). They were managed by Daniele Frignani
  • Parmaclima had been 16-12 in the regular season then upset Rimini 3-2 in the semifinals. They had been 3rd in offense (150 R) and 4th in fewest runs allowed (107) in the regular season. Their top hitter had been Charlie Mirabal (.327/.439/.480) and they let their top pitcher Eduard Pirvu (1-0, Sv, 1.85) go during the season when he deserted the team briefly to pitch for his native Romanian national team. Erly Casanova (8-2, 1.87, 105 K in 82 IP) gave them a Cuban ace as well; he tied for the most Ks in the league, while Michele Pomponi (1-3, 3.52) had allowed the lowest average (.160) but had struggled with control. Gianguido Poma was in his first season as their skipper.


  • August 31: Bologna 14, Parma 1. As expected, Bologna starts strong as Martinez (1 R in 5 2/3 IP), Noguera (0 R in 1 1/3 IP) and Filippo Crepaldi (0 R in 2 IP). 3B Jose Flores scores 3 times, C/1B Marval homers twice and drives in four and CF/LF Gilmer Lampe draws 4 walks. Parma's only run comes when RF/2B Aldo Koutsoyanopulos drives in 2B/P Segundo Paolini. Pomponi walks 8, gives up 5 hits and 6 runs in 3 1/3 IP.
  • September 1: Bologna 10, Parma 3. Rivero fans 10 in 6 innings, Mazzanti hits a grand slam as part of a 9-run third and Lampe raps 3 hits. Cuban national team Ulfrido García is roughed up for 10 runs in 4 innings. CF Sebastiano Poma (2 for 4, R, RBI) is the top star for Parma, while Yomel Rivera turns in fine relief (8 K, 2 H, 1 BB, 0 R in 4 IP).
  • September 4: Parma 9, Bologna 1. After getting routed twice, Parma pulls off a rout of their own. Casanova fans 8 in a complete game win. 1B Alex Sambucci scores twice, while SS Mirabal hits a two-run homer. Flores has 3 hits for Bologna, while Noguera takes the loss.
  • September 5: Bologna 4, Parma 3. Bologna wrapped up the title. They looked like they had it early, with Martinez holding a 2-0 lead going into the bottom of the 8th before SS Luca Scalera homered. Bologna got an insurance run in the 9th off Garcia and it proved critical. In the bottom of the 9th, against Rivero, CF Poma hit a one-out single and C Frank Morejón singled. DH Lorenzo Gradali singled in Poma. Scalera then hit a grounder to third and they got one at second but an error by 2B Alessandro Vaglio to try to complete the double play scored the tying run. In the 10th, CF Lampe singled, was bunted over and stole third but was stranded. Gouvea went 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 10th. In the top of the 11th, LF Kevin Moesquit singled for Bologna and 3B Flores bunted him over. C Marval was intentionally walked to bring up Mazzanti. The long-time Italian star singled in Moesquit with the winning run. In the bottom of the 11th, Gouvea walked 1B Sambucci on seven pitches but recovered to fan Poma, get backup C Alessandro Deotto (who had pinch-run for Morejón in the 9th) on a fly and Riccardo Flisi (who had pinch-ran for Gradali) went down swinging to end it.