Mark Talarico

From BR Bullpen

Mark Talarico

  • Bats Right, Throws Right

Mark Talarico was an All-American outfielder and Olympic player.

Talarico was an All-American in NCAA Division III in both 1982 and 1983; the first year, one of the other outfielders picked was Dan Pasqua. He played on the winning teams in both the 1981 Division III College World Series and 1983 Division III College World Series. After graduating, he went to play in Italy, where he was a productive player for eight seasons.

In the summer of 1983, he hit .349/.412/.465 for Fortitudo Bologna; he also pitched, going 4-1 with a save and a 5.32 ERA. He was 13-7 for Castenaso in 1984 and hit over .300 again. He represented Italy in both the 1984 Amateur World Series and 1984 Olympics. In the Series, he hit .292/.393/.292 as a CF-LF-DH and went 2-0 with a 1.00 ERA, while the rest of Italy's staff was 1-6. He picked up wins over both Puerto Rico and the Netherlands. Talarico was third in the event in ERA, behind Dong-ryeul Sun and Sheng-Hsiung Chuang.

The right-hander batted .375/.505/.516 with 90 runs and 50 RBI in 67 games in 1985, drawing 72 walks back with Bologna. He also excelled on the mound (15-4, 2.32, 177 K, 27 BB in 178 2/3 IP). He had the then-fourth-highest walk total in Serie A1 history, but amazingly did not pace the league, as Roberto Bianchi drew 74 walks for the #3 slot. He was four wins shy of leader Paolo Ceccaroli.

Mark was 10-3 with a 2.87 ERA for Bologna in 1986 and hit .343/.414/.545 with 51 runs in 45 games. He put up a .405/.510/.608 line with 16 doubles, 12 steals (in 13 tries) and 50 runs in 41 contests in 1987 while he had a 8-3, 2.38 record on the mound. He was three wins behind leader Rolando Cretis. In 1988, Talarico posted a 4-2, 2.96 record for Bologna while batting .333/.383/.451.

The veteran moved to Fiorentina in 1989 and hit .327/.421/.467; he was 5-5 with a 3.97 ERA. He ended his career in 1990 for a third go-around with Bologna. He saved two games and had a 4.91 ERA in six outings as a pitcher; at the plate, he hit .303/.432/.408 with 37 runs in 39 games.

In 360 games in Italy, he batted .350/.456/.518 with 354 runs, 270 walks and 232 RBI while striking out 127 times. He stole 66 bases in 84 tries, fielded .963 (while playing every position except for catcher at least once) and had a 61-32, 3.14 record with 3 saves. He pitched 120 games (53 starts), striking out 659 in 805 2/3 IP.

Through 2010, he ranks 12th in Italian annals in career average (between Giuseppe Carelli and Giampiero Faraone), 6th in OBP (behind Bianchi, Jesse Baez, Giorgio Castelli, Claudio Liverziani and John Robert Long) and 22nd in slugging.