2011 European Cup

From BR Bullpen

The 2011 European Cup was won by T&A San Marino, their second European title. Nine countries and twelve teams participated. Former majors leaguers involved were Greg McCarthy, Pat Ahearne, Dusty Bergman, Eugène Kingsale, Darwin Cubillan and Edgard Clemente.

Competing Teams[edit]

Parma Group[edit]

Amsterdam Group[edit]

Final Four (Brno)[edit]


June 1[edit]


San Marino tied it in the top of the 6th, with a Legito error letting two runners come around. The Netherlands made it back in the bottom of the inning and then some, when Arends singled yet again and SS Dwayne Kemp homered off Bonilla. Brice was hit by a pitch, advanced on a single by CF Shaldimar Daantji and scored on an error by Granato. Neptunus got one more run in the 8th, on a double by Vernooij off Ilo Bartolucci and a single by C Mourik Huijser. Craig Anderson, Berry van Driel and Arshwin Asjes combined on 3 1/3 shutout innings for Neptunus, Anderson getting the win. Bonilla took the loss. Arends finished 3 for 4 with 3 runs and a RBI.


  • Hoboken Pioneers 8, North Stars Moscow 3. In Russia's first European Cup appearance in three years, they remained close with Belgium for half the contest before Hoboken pulled away. In the top of the first, Belgium loaded the bases with two outs off Viacheslav Vasilyev then 1B Nicky Mertens delivered a 2-run single. In the bottom of the second, RF and former minor leaguer Alexander Toropov tied it with a 2-run single of his own, off Josh Neitz. In the 4th, Neitz bunted his way aboard, then came home on a one-out triple by RF Gregory Lambrechts. Hoboken tried to put some insurance on in the 5th, getting men on the corners with two out, but SS Randy Giorgiadis was picked off by Vasilyev.

Moscow tied it in the 5th, on a walk by DH Maxim Polyakov, a ground-out and a single by single by LF Maxim Monakhov. Neitz would settle down after that, allowing no more runs in going the distance. Hoboken got the lead in the 6th when Mertens drew a two-out walk, Lambrechts tripled him in and LF Matthias Group singled home Lambrechts. They padded the lead in the 7th on a 2-run double by CF Dave Herssens and a passed ball. Lambrechts and Herssens both finished the day with three hits.

Amsterdam started its comeback in the bottom of the 6th. C Sidney de Jong drew a full-count walk, then 1B Percy Isenia homered to left to close the gap to two. In the 7th, #9 hitter and 3B Rashid Gerard singled off Bergman. CF Wesley Connor doubled, then new 2B Roeland Henrique hit into a two-run error by Bergman to tie it. Peter Dankerl relieved and threw a wild pitch, sending Henrique to third. De Jong flew out, scoring the go-ahead run.

Gaski singled in the 7th, but was gunned down running. In the 8th, Amsterdam got some insurance when DH Bas Nooij was plunked, LF Kenny Berkenbosch doubled, Connor drew a two-out walk and Henrique singled in Nooij. They got their last run in the 9th on hits by RF Bas de Jong, SS Vince Rooi and former Marlins farmhand Berkenbosch.

June 2[edit]


Roodenburg and Leon Boyd kept Draci Brno scoreless over the next five innings, while Ahearne remained sharp. In the 6th, Neptunus got to him, aided by an error. Schneider began with a miscue on a ground ball by Arends. With two out, PH Eugène Kingsale drew a four-pitch walk. Wagenaar then singled to center, bringing in Arends with the tying score. Neptunus took the lead in the 7th. With one out, 3B Raily Legito singled and stole second, then Arends hit a 2-run homer to left. After a rain delay, Greg McCarthy relieved his fellow former big leaguer but allowed back-to-back hits to Brice and Vernooij. Up stepped Neptunus's player with MLB experience, Kingsale. The veteran (who had stayed in the game in LF) failed to deliver, with a fly ball out on a full count. Wagenaar then popped out, but Neptunus had a 3-1 lead with just two innings to go.

Berry van Driel entered to pitch the 8th for Neptunus but was unsuccessful, giving up a Schneider double and Polanský single to cut the lead to one. In the 9th, former Reds minor leaguer Arshwin Asjes was summoned by Jan Collins to relieve van Driel. He got one out, but backup 2B Přemek Chroust doubled on a full-count offering. CF Karel Hrušovský, the #9 hitter, also doubled and the game was suddenly tied. Asjes recovered to retire former minor leaguer Jakub Hajtmar as well as Schneider.

In the bottom of the tenth, Draci Brno loaded the bases, then Schneider singled in C Alex Derhak to hand Asjes the loss. Schneider not only got the game-winning RBI, but he also got the win with two shutout innings of relief.


  • Hoboken Pioneers 8, Heidenheim Heidekoepfe 7. Hoboken pulled off an upset of last year's European Cup runner-ups, though a late rally nearly robbed them of that upset. In the second, 1B Michael Weigl drew a leadoff walk for Heidenheim. CF Robert Gruber singled, the first of four hits for the German entry (his teammates combined for only three, though). A walk to DH Peter Dankerl loaded the bases. TJ Hendricks recovered after that, getting 2B Hagen Rätz on a sacrifice fly and retiring the next two on grounders.

In the second, Hoboken tied the score. CF Dave Herssens singled. 1B Nicky Mertens hit into a force, then C Stijn Janssens singled. After a fly-out, LF Matthias Group walked on four pitches. Benedikt Antwi continued to have control issues, walking DH Roy D'Oliveira on four pitches as well to force in a run. SS Randy Giorgiadis fanned to end the inning. The Belgians took the lead in the third. 2B Dennis Ribbens drew a walk, then 3B Dennis De Quint singled. An error by SS Matt Gaski loaded the bases. Mertens coaxed another Antwi bases-loaded walk to make it 2-1, then Janssens singled for a 3-1 score. Gruber moved to the hill to replace Antwi. Group singled in Herrsens, then D'Oliveira delivered a sacrifice fly and Germany was shockingly down, 5-1.

Gruber opened the 4th with a double and scored on a single by Rätz. With two on and two outs, American import Gaski again failed to deliver, striking out on a full count. Hoboken padded their lead in the 6th. D'Oliveira doubled, then Giorgiadis laid down a bunt hit. Ribbens hit into an error by Gruber to load the bases. De Quint drew the third bases-loaded walk for Hoboken. Mertens followed with a sacrifice fly for a 7-2 score. The Pioneers got their last run in the 8th, on singles by Group, D'Oliveira and Giorgiadis.

Still down 8-2 going into the bottom of the 9th, OF Johannes Schaeffler drew a leadoff walk for Heidenheim. Hendricks got the next two batters and the game looked to be over. C Simon Gühring, a former Brewers farmhand, doubled in Schaeffler to make it 8-3. 3B Andrew Smith hit into an error by Giorgiadis to score another run. Weigl walked, then Gruber singled in Smith and it was 8-5. PH Alexander Lauterbach coaxed a full-count walk, the 13th of the game overall. Derek Bondo relieved Hendricks, who had thrown 172 pitches. Bondo matched the theme of the day with a lack of control, plunking Rätz and walking Schaeffler (his second walk of the inning) for a 8-7 score. Belgium tried switching pitchers again, now going a third American native, Terrence Antonacci. He got LF David Fuesser to foul out to first to end the late rally.

June 3[edit]


  • Cariparma Parma 5, Rouen Huskies 4. France's top squad gave the hosts a scare before Parma rallied to win it. With one out in the first, CF Jordan Crystal singled off Francesco Cozzolino and RF Joris Bert homered for a 2-0 score. Young first baseman Alex Sambucci took Keino Perez deep to open the second and cut the lead in half. In the bottom of the third, though, Rouen's batters kept pounding Cozzolino. SS Luc Piquet laid down a bunt hit, then Crystal doubled. Bert (the first French player ever signed by a MLB team) singled in both runners for a 4-1 score.

Pedro Orta relieved Cozzolino in the 4th and tossed 5 shutout innings (though Bert got a third hit) and Justin Cicatello would go 1-2-3 in the 9th as Rouen got nothing more. In the meantime, Perez was maintaining the lead. In the 5th, Parma scored on a walk to CF Leonardo Zileri, an error by SS Owen Ozanich and a single by DH Matteo Ugolotti. They pulled within a run in the 6th on a leadoff double by RF Rodney Medina and a two-out single by Zileri.

In the 8th, the home team tied it. 2B Davide Dallospedale drew a walk on Perez's 119th pitch. Martin Johnson relieved him. Medina laid down a sacrifice bunt, then Sambucci singled. An error by Ozanich on the play made it 4-4. C Boris Marche threw out two Parma baserunners trying to steal during the 8th. In the top of the 9th, Johnson got two outs but 3B Luca Scalera homered to put Parma ahead for the first time. It was enough, though, as Cicatelli closed the win.

  • T&A San Marino 6, AVG Draci Brno 1. San Marino went over .500 with a decisive win today. They got all the runs they needed in the first against Jan Tomek. SS Anthony Granato led off with a walk, then 3B Giovanni Pantaleoni singled. With one out, the runners pulled off a double steal, then DH Jairo Ramos Gizzi hit a RBI single. LF Lorenzo Avagnina singled as well and it was 2-0. In the second, Draci Brno got their only run when C Alex Derhak drew a walk from Luca Martignoni and 3B Jan Felkl doubled him in. Avagnina homered to lead off the 4th and make it 3-1. Draci Brno got runners on second and third in the 5th but failed to score against Martignoni and reliever Darwin Cubillan. Avagnina scored on a single by RF Riccardo Suardi in the 6th for a 4-1 San Martino lead. They got their last two runs in the 8th, with an error by Felkl proving crucial.


  • Heidenheim Heidekoepfe 6, CB Sant Boi 2. Germany's Martin Almstetter and Spain's Ruben Fente each tossed scoreless ball for three. In the fourth, Germany got going on a single by CF Robert Gruber and a double by 1B Michael Weigl, but Gruber was thrown out trying to score. DH Peter Dankerl singled in Weigl, then 2B Hagen Rätz singled as well; an error on the play by RF William Domero scored Dankerl. Almstetter finally cracked in the 5th, giving up three straight singles to cut Heidenheim's lead to 2-1. In the 6th, Gruber again kicked things off for them with a single. He moved over on an error by Fente, but Dankerl bunted into an out at third. After a second out, RF Johannes Schaeffler singled and an error by CF Daniel Martinez made it 4-1. That was all Almstetter would need as he finished with a 6-2 win. Gruber got 3 hits in 5 at-bats to give himself 8 hits in the first 3 games.
  • Unipol Bologna 8, Hoboken Pioneers 4. In a match-up of unbeaten teams, Bologna won as expected, though it was their closest contest yet. In the first, Bologna scored a run off Tom Lorrentop on singles by SS Juan Carlos Infante and CF Edgard Clemente, with a passed ball sandwiched between them. In the third, 3B Joe Mazzuca doubled and C Juan Pablo Angrisano singled him in. Bologna kept pecking away in the 5th when Mazzua singled, stole second, took third on a wild pitch and wound up scoring on a double steal with Angrisano. They got their fourth one-run inning in the 6th, with Infante singling home RF Daniele Malengo.

In the bottom of the 6th, Hoboken finally scored off former Olympian Fabio Betto. With two outs, PH Nicky Mertens walked, then 3B Dennis Ribbens and CF Dave Herssens each singled to make it 4-1. A double by SS Dennis De Quint cut the gap to two. In the 7th, Bologna put it away against Derek Bondo. With two away, DH Mark Castellitto singled and stole second. 1B Massimiliano Sartori and Malengo were both hit by pitches to load the bases. A wild pitch scored Castellitto, then 2B Livinston Santeniello drew a walk. Infante singled home two more and it was now 7-2.

Hoboken tried to comeback in the 7th. With one out, DH Stijn Janssens singled, as did RF Gregory Lambrechts. After a second out, Mertens was hit by a pitch. Ribbens delivered a 2-run single for a 7-4 game but Herssens struck out to end the inning. After a scoreless 8th, Bologna added another insurance run in the 9th on singles by Satori and Santeniello. Victor Moreno went 1-2-3 in the bottom of the ninth, fanning two.

  • L&D Amsterdam Pirates 7, North Stars Moscow 1. Moscow had no hope against Frank van Heijst and company, scoring only a meaningless 8th-inning run off Van Heijst. In the meantime, Evgeny Vorotyntsev and two relievers combined on 9 walks. 1B Percy Isenia went 1 for 1 with a walk, two runs and two RBI to lead a well-rounded Dutch offense.

June 4[edit]



  • Heidenheim Heidekoepfe 7, Unipol Bologna 6. In a rematch of last year's European Cup finale, Heidenheim turned the tables on Bologna in one of the most exciting contests of this Cup.

The Bundesliga champions got the game's first run, scoring in the second off former Marlins farmhand Cody Cillo. 1B Peter Dankerl walked with one out, stole second and came home on a hit by 2B Hagen Rätz. After scoreless play in the third and fourth, Heidenheim doubled their lead in the 5th. RF Johannes Schaeffler singled, then LF and #9 batter David Fuesser got plunked. SS Matt Gaski singled to load the bases, then C Simon Gühring hit into a run-scoring twin killing.

After five scoreless innings, Aljosha Schatmann finally allowed a run in the 6th. SS Juan Carlos Infante singled, took second on a botched pick-off attempt and came home one out later on a double by 3B Joe Mazzuca. It remained 2-1 going into the 9th, when Bologna tied it up. DH Juan Pablo Angrisano led off with a single, then was bunted over. C Marco Sabbatani singled Angrisasno to third. Edgard Clemente delivered a clutch pinch-hit single to even things up.

In the 10th, Bologna went up 4-2 on a 2-run single by CF Mark Castellitto. In the bottom of the inning, though, Gaski doubled in one run against Victor Moreno and Fuesser scored on a wild pitch. With no one out, Germany got men on the corners. Moreno recovered to get the next three hitters, two by strikeout, including CF Robert Gruber, a star of the tourney's first three days.

Neither team scored in the 11th. In the 12th, Schatmann hit Infante to load the bases (the European Cup uses the IBAF Extra innings rule whereby teams start with two men on base). LF Gabriele Ermini grounded to Gaski, who threw home for out number one. Mazzuca singled, though, to put Bologna in front 5-4. Infante tried to score on the play, but was thrown out at home by Gruber. Castellitto doubled in Ermini, making the baserunning out by Infante a costly one.

In the bottom of the 12th, Schaeffler singled and an error by Infante on the play made it 6-5. Moreno got two outs and was on pace to lock up the win, but Gaski delivered a drive to right field to score Schaeffler. An error on the play by Daniele Malengo allowed Gaski to take second. Gühring, the second German-raised US minor leaguer, delivered a game-winning single to pull out a big win for his team.

On the losing side, Mazzuda (3 for 5, BB, 2 RBI, 2B) and Castellitto (2 for 6, 2B, 3 RBI) had big days. For the winners, Gaski (3 for 6, 2B, R, 2 RBI) and Schaeffler (2 for 5, 3 R, RBI) paced the offense. Schatmann threw 151 pitches in going the full 12 innings for Heidenheim.

June 5[edit]


In the fourth, Yepez doubled and 3B Luca Scalera hit a two-out double for the game-deciding run. Diegomar Markwell relieved Anderson in the 5th but the two-time Olympian was a bust today. De Simoni singled and was grounded over, then Medina was intentionally walked. Cleanup hitter Alex Sambucci made Neptunus pay for that decision with a RBI single, then Yepez drew a four-pitch walk. After CF Leonardo Zileri struck out, C Riccardo Bertagnon rapped a two-run single to right for a 5-1 lead.

Neptunus got chances in both the 5th and 6th. In the 5th, 2B Benjamin Dille hit a one-out single, Arends drew a two-out walk and Brice walked as well. Former Cubs minor leaguer Kemp was retired by Grifantini, though. In the 6th, Scalera reached on an error by 3B Raily Legito, was bunted over, took third on a bunt hit by De Simoni and scored on an error by Markwell for a 6-1 edge for Parma. Neptunus got their last threat in the bottom of the sixth. With one away, Huijser reached on a Yepez error. Daantji was retired, but Kingsale walked. Grifantini was relieved by Justin Cicatello, who walked Dille to load the bases. 3-time Olympic player Legito continued his poor performance in this Cup by grounding out.

Parma got their last run in the 8th against reliever Berry van Driel. De Simoni singled to improve to 4-for-4, then took second on a wild pitch. Dallospedale singled him in to finish punching Parma's ticket to the Final Four in Brno.


In the 6th, Germany pounded Lobanov to run away with the game. Gaski singled, then C Simon Gühring hit into a Lobanov error. Smith cracked a two-run triple to right field. Gruber drew a walk, then Lauterbach singled in Smith to make it 6-1. Nikol Chermoshentsev relieved Lobanov but DH Peter Dankerl bunted his way aboard. 2B Hagen Rätz drew a bases-loaded walk for a 6-run lead. RF Johannes Schaeffler hit into the inning's first two outs with a run-scoring double play ball, then Fuesser hit into a Maksiakov error that made it 9-1.

After that, it was all academic. The final totals showed big days for Germany's 3-4-5 hitters of Smith (2 for 4, 2 BB, 3B, 4 R, 3 RBI), Gruber (2 for 4, 2 BB, R, 2 RBI) and Lauterbach (3 for 6, 2B, R, 4 RBI). Lobanov wound up with 7 walks, 9 hits and 8 runs in 5 innings. Maksiakov and LF Alexander Toropov each had three hits for the losing squad.

September 21[edit]


  • Parma 3, Unipol Bologna 2. The other first-round game was also a one-run affair, though not an extra-inning match. Both teams had scoring chances through the first four innings but failed to deliver, with both Parma's Marco Grifantini and Bologna's Jesus Matos getting out of jams. In the 5th, Parma got all the runs they needed. 3B Luca Scalera led off with a single, then CF Christian Leoni doubled. With one out, SS Marco Yepez was intentionally walked. Matos threw a wild pitch to make it 1-0, then 2B Davide Dallospedale grounded in a second run. RF Rodney Medina singled in Yepez for a 3-0 lead. Grifantini allowed two runs in the bottom of the 7th; with two away and the bases loaded, Leonardo D'Amico relieved and retired Joe Mazzuca in the clutch. Bologna got two hits off D'Amico in the 8th but again failed to tie it. In the bottom of the 9th, they got another chance. 2B Liviston Santaniello singled and was bunted over. Mihai Burlea relieved and Santaniello stole third to move 90 feet from a tie. Burlea whiffed LF Gabriele Ermini but walked Mazzuca, the potential winning run. Up came former major leaguer Edgard Clemente. The Romanian hurler did not back down, falling behind Clemente 2-0 then throwing three strikes in a row past him to send Parma to the finals.

September 22[edit]


Amsterdam got going quickly. With one out in the first, 2B Roelie Henrique reached on an error by SS Juan Carlos Infante. DH Sidney de Jong walked. After RF Bas de Jong flew out, SS Vince Rooi singled home Henrique. LF Kenny Berkenbosch singled as well to make it 2-0. In the second, CF Wesley Connor drew a one-out walk from Cody Cillo and Henrique, Sidney de Jong and Bas de Jong all followed with singles to make it 3-0 and put the bases loaded. Rooi hit into a force at home, though, and Berkenbosch grounded out.

Meanwhile, Jos de Jong blanked Bologna for three innings. In the bottom of the fourth, DH Juan Pablo Angrisano singled and advanced on a Connor error. 1B Daniele Malengo singled him home to close the gap to two, but de Jong escaped further damage. Meanwhile, the Pirates increased their lead in the fifth against relief pitcher Fabio Betto. Berkenbosch opened with a double, then 1B Percy Isenia hit into an error by 3B Andrea D'Amico. C Bas Nooij cracked a two-run double to center and the Amsterdam club was ahead, 5-1.

In the bottom of the fifth, Bologna reentered the game against reliever Ben Grover. With one out, LF Gabriele Ermini walked and Infante singled him to third. RF Mark Castellitto tripled in both runners, then scored on an Angrisano grounder that pulled Bologna within a run, 5-4. Malengo walked and C Marco Sabbatani singled. Grover erred on a pick-off attempted, sending Malengo to third, but he recovered to fan CF Riccardo Furnasari to escape with the lead still intact.

The Pirates added insurance in the 6th. Sidney de Jong and Bas de Jong both singled, then former Expos and Pirates farmhand Rooi smashed a 3-run homer to left for a 8-4 score. In the 8th, they went ahead 9-4 when Berkenbosch homered off Luca Turrini.

Bologna stormed back in the bottom of the 8th. Grover retired the first two batters, then 2B Massimiliano Sartori grounded to backup 3B Seb Visser, who made a crucial error that cost his team the game in retrospect. Ermini singled, then Infante doubled home Sartori. Castellitto drew a walk. Rik Geestman relieved Grover but was no better, serving up a bases-clearing double to Angrisano to bring Bologna within a run again, 9-8. Malengo singled singled in Angrisano to tie the score, then Sabbatani got a single, the 7th straight Bologna batter to reach. Geestman got Furnasari to hit into an inning-ending force.

Mark Langone replaced Turrini in the top of the 9th. Henrique singled and Sidney de Jong walked. Bas de Jong bunted the runners over, then Rooi drew an intentional walk. That brought up former Marlins minor leaguer Berkenbosch, but he did not deliver, grounding into a rally-killing 5-4-3 double play.

In the bottom of the 9th, Geestman walked D'Amico on five pitches. Al Morales Gomes relieved. Sartori grounded to his counterpart Henrique, who erred to put runners on second and third. Ermini drew a four-pitch walk, bringing up former minor leaguer Infante. He did his job, singling through the right side of the infield to bring in D'Amico with the winner.

For the victors, Sabbatani had four hits and Angrisano four RBI. On the losing side, Rooi finished with four RBI and Henrique, Berkenbosch and Bas de Jong each had 3 hits.

In the top of the third, Parma got their lone run off Tiago Da Silva, who went the distance with a 7-hit, no-walk, six-K effort. SS Marco Yepez and 2B Davide Dallospedale got one-out singles. RF Rodney Medina then hit a sacrifice fly to make it 4-1; Medina went 3 for 3 as a bright spot for the losing squad. In the bottom of the third, DH Jairo Ramos Gizzi delivered a solo shot for San Marino. He took Corradini deep again in the fifth. In the 7th when 3B Giovanni Pantaleoni singled with one out against Mihai Burlea and 1B Willie Vasquez doubled him in to make it 7-1 San Marino, the final score.

Final Standings[edit]

Amsterdam Group

Parma Group

Final Four[edit]

(at Brno, Czech Republic)

  • Semi Final
Winner Score Loser
T&A San Marino 1-0 L&D Amsterdam Pirates
ASD Parma 3-2 Unipol Bologna


Winner Score Loser
T&A San Marino 7-1 ASD Parma

Awards and Leaders[edit]




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