European Champions Cup 2017: Another solid Dutch victory

After L&D Amsterdam Pirates beat their “Italian” opponent this morning, it was Curaçao Neptunus’ turn to face an Italian team. So far in the Dutch hoofdklasse, Neptunus did not show their best baseball yet, but today vs Fortitudo Bologna, it was the way it used to be. In a walk over victory, the Rotterdam-based team beat Bologna 12-6.

The game appeared not to start well for Curaçao Neptunus as starting pitcher Elton Koeiman struggled through the first inning. After he picked off the first base runner of Bologna, he gave up back-to-back walks and threw a wild pitch to allow runners in scoring position. But Koeiman got out of the inning without any damage as he served up the pitch that was hit into a 6-4-3 double play by Alex Sambucci.

After both teams did not do much on the bases in the first and second inning, Fortitudo Bologna took a 2-0 lead. After a walk and a single, Alessandro Vaglio singled to load the bases, followed by Osman Marval, who hit a two-RBI single up the middle.

Neptunus would cut Bologna’s lead in half in the bottom of the fourth. With Stijn van der Meer on third and two outs, Dwayne Kemp singled to left center field to drive in the first run for Neptunus.

In the next frame, Neptunus would push through for the game-tying and the lead in the game. After Urving Kemp scored from third on a double by Stijn van der Meer, Benjamin Dille was hit by a pitch. Christian Diaz came through with a double to right field to drive in both runners.

Despite struggling in the first inning and giving up two runs in the third inning, Elton Koeiman pitched five decent innings. Despite walking five batters, he kept his team in the game before he handed over the ball to Diegomar Markwell, who made a rare relief appearance. Markwell lasted two innings in which he gave up a run on three hits.

After Markwell gave up that sole run in the seventh inning, Neptunus extended their lead with four runs on one mighty blow by Gianison Boekhoudt. A first pitch hanging curve was smashed over the left field wall.

Both teams scored three more runs, Curaçao Neptunus in the bottom of the eighth and Fortitudo Bologna in the top of the ninth to reach the final score of 12-6.

Elton Koeiman earned the win as Bologna’s ace Rudy Owens took the loss after 4.2 innings and three runs given up.

Best hitter for Curaçao Neptunus was Stijn van der Meer, who went 4 for 5 with a double, an RBI and four runs scored. Gianison Boekhoudt drove in the most runs for Neptunus: five.

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