While the Dutch National Team is going to play in the St. Petersburg International Baseball at the end of February and the beginning of March, a second European team also is going to make the trip to Florida. As reported on FIBS.it, the Italian National Team is going to Vero Beach, the former Spring Training home of the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. 26 players will be on the roster for the training camp from March 1 to March 14. Exhibition games are planned against the New York Mets, Washington Nationals and Florida Marlins.
The coaching staff of manager Marco Mazzieri will be assisted by new bench coach Marco Nanni, pitching coach Bill Holmberg, hitting coach Mike Piazza and coaches Claudi Vecchi and Alberto D’Auria. Additionally former Major Leaguer Frank Catalanotto, who retired after 1,265 games in the big leagues and played for Italy at the 2006 and 2009 World Baseball Classics, will be in camp as a coach. It is certainly a great opportunity for Italy to kick off preparations for the 2011 IBAF Baseball World Cup in Panama at the end of September.