Alex Maestri

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Alex Maestri
Alex Maestri 2007.jpg
Maestri pitching for the Peoria Chiefs, Single-A affiliates of the Chicago Cubs on August 3, 2007.
Gunma Diamond Pegasus – No. 91
Pitcher
Born: (1985-06-01) June 1, 1985 (age 31)
Cesena, Italy
Bats: Right Throws: Right
ABL statistics
(through 2012)
Win-loss 4-4
Earned run average 3.25
Strikeouts 53
NPB statistics
(through 2015)
Win-loss 14-11
Earned run average 3.44
Strikeouts 164
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Alessandro Maestri (born June 1, 1985 in Cesena, Italy) is an Italian professional baseball player. A pitcher, the 5'11", 180 lb. right-hander signed with the Chicago Cubs as a non-drafted free agent on Jan. 6, 2006, making him the first Italian-born pitcher to be signed by a Major League Baseball team.[1]

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Born in Cesena, Maestri grew up in Viserba, a suburb near Rimini. He played in the Italian minor leagues for Torre Pedrera. In 2005 he played with San Marino Baseball in the Italian Baseball League, the highest league in Italy.

Chicago Cubs organization[edit]

Early in the 2007 season, Maestri's second season of professional ball with the Class A Peoria Chiefs, he gave up seven runs in two innings against the Cedar Rapids Kernels. From that point on, he did not give up more than two runs in an appearance for the rest of the season, and converted his first seven save opportunities to earn himself a Midwest League All-Star nod.

His success in 2007 prompted the Cubs to try to convert Maestri into a starter. Thus, he began the 2008 season in the starting rotation of the Florida State League Class A advanced Daytona Cubs. In this role, he went 5-3 with a 3.69 ERA to again earn himself an All Star nod. Following the all star game, Maestri was promoted to the double A Southern League Tennessee Smokies. With the Smokies, Maestri made two starts in which he pitched 11 innings and gave up eight earned runs before shoulder soreness forced the Cubs to shut him down for the remainder of the season, and ended the Cubs' experiment with Maestri as a starter.[2]

The Cubs released Maestri in April 2011,[3] and he signed with the Lincoln Saltdogs of the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball.[4]

Brisbane Bandits[edit]

On November 5, 2011, Maestri made his Australian Baseball League debut with the Brisbane Bandits. Starting against the Canberra Cavalry, Maestri went five innings and gave up two hits, picking up the first win of the Bandits' 2011-12 season. His performances earned him a spot with Team World at the 2011 Australian Baseball League All-Star Game. Maestri pitched a scoreless inning in the game. Maestri continued the season as the Bandits' ace, finishing third highest in the league in strikeouts and innings pitched. The Bandits ended the half a game short of the playoffs, with Maestri posting a 3.25 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP en route to winning the ABL's Fan Choice Award.

Rimini Baseball Club and the Kagawa Olive Guyners[edit]

Maestri played portions of 2012 for the Rimini Baseball Club and the Kagawa Olive Guyners of Japan's Shikoku Island League.[5]

Orix Buffaloes[edit]

Maestri signed with the Orix Buffaloes of Nippon Professional baseball prior to the 2012 season.[6] On the 9 November 2015, Maestri elected for free agency.[7]

Hanwha Eagles[edit]

In 2016, Maestri moved to the Hanwha Eagles of the Korea Baseball Organization.[8] He was released on June 25, 2016 to make way for new signing Fabio Castillo.[9]

Gunma Diamond Pegasus[edit]

On 12 July 2016, after being released from his Korean team, Maestri returned to the independent leagues of Japan by signing for Gunma Diamond Pegasus of the Baseball Challenge League. [10]

International career[edit]

Italy national team[edit]

Maestri was signed by Cubs scout Bill Holmberg, who also serves as pitching coach for the Italy national baseball team for whom Maestri pitched in both the 2006 and 2009 World Baseball Classic. Maestri gave up one earned run in two appearances out of the bullpen in the 2006 WBC. In 2009, Maestri pitched 2.2 innings without giving up a run.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Minor League Baseball". Archived from the original on 2 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-20. 
  2. ^ "Cubs' Maestri a rarity on Team Italy". Archived from the original on 4 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-20. 
  3. ^ Eddy, Matt. "Minor League Transactions: March 30-April 5." Baseball America. April 7, 2011. Accessed April 25, 2011.
  4. ^ "Chicago Cubs release Alex Maestri, stays in US." Mister-Baseball. April 11, 2011. Accessed April 25, 2011.
  5. ^ "アレックス・マエストリ選手入団会見(Conference for the signing of Alex Maestri)". Kagawa Olive Guyners. 5 April 2012. Retrieved 2 September 2016. 
  6. ^ Coskrey, Jason (18 June 2014). "Buffaloes' Italian pitcher Maestri keeps track of Azzurri's World Cup progress". Japan Times. Retrieved 2 September 2016. 
  7. ^ "オリックスのバリントンら外国人3選手が自由契約に (3 Orix foreign players become free agents)" (in Japanese). Nikkan Sports. 10 November 2015. Retrieved 2 September 2016. 
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ "Hanwha Eagles on verge of releasing ex-big league pitcher". Korea Times. 24 June 2016. Retrieved 2 September 2016. 
  10. ^ "アレッサンドロ・マエストリ選手 移籍のお知らせ" (in Japanese). BC League. 12 July 2016. Retrieved 29 August 2016. 
  11. ^ "World Baseball Classic Team Italy Page". Archived from the original on 21 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-20. 

External links[edit]