CARIPARMA missed the playoffs in the Italian Baseball League due to losing five of the last six games and seven of the last eleven games. It is especially disappointing for the club, as they swept a three-game series against T&A SAN MARINO with two weeks to go in the regular season. SAN MARINO later secured fourth place in the standings and moved on to win the championship in seven games against DANESI NETTUNO, while PARMA had to settle for the Coppa Italia tournament with their 22-20 record and a fifth-place finish.
What the stats say
The offense of CARIPARMA was sixth in the league with a .250 batting average (OBP .339/SLG .330), scoring 178 runs. On the other hand the pitching (ERA 4.54, 6th) and the defense (65 errors, 7th) allowed 227 runs (188 ER).
Three players led the offensive forces of the club with on-base-percentages above the .400 mark. Leadoff hitter Adolfo Gomez batted .358 (.467/.430) with one homerun, 36 runs scored and 13 RBIs. Orlando Munoz (.357/.448/.448) had one homerun, eleven doubles, 21 runs scored and 20 RBI in 42 games. Leonardo Zileri (.329/.404/.490) scored 27 runs and drove in 24. He and Pascual Matos combined to hit six of the nine homeruns on the team, the only club in the IBL with single digits in this category. Matos (.241/.262/.367) also led the team with 25 RBIs. Riccardo Bertagnon had a solid year too at the plate with a batting average of .257 (.364/.368), three triples, nine doubles, 15 runs scored and 23 RBI.
The pitching staff was stabilized by three hurlers with ERAs under the 4.00 mark. Ace Jared Michael Natale had a 5-7 record with an ERA of 3.46 in 15 games (13 starts). He struck out 78 (30 walks) in 93 2/3 innings. Hector Mercado started nine games, having an even 3-3 record with an ERA of 3.76. He struck out 49 (20 walks) in 55 innings. The number one option out of the bullpen was Mattia Salsi (4-2, 5 saves) with a solid ERA of 3.92. Josmir Romero (ERA 5.10), Roberto Corradini (ERA 5.46) and Filippo Mori (ERA 5.91) split time in the rotation and the bullpen. These six hurlers worked 347 1/3 of the 373 PARMA-innings.
PARMA already confirmed that Natale will stay at the top of the pitching staff for 2009 and brought in another pitcher from the ORANGE COUNTY FLYERS with Bob Cramer. They also acquired the Dutch Hoofdklasse veteran Johnny Balentina and Johnny Carvajal of the relegated IBL team RANGERS REDIPUGLIA. On the down side they will probably lose Gomez, as rumors pointing into the departure of the leadoff man.