Maximiliano De Biase
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Maximiliano De Biase
- Bats Right, Throws Right
Growing up in Argentina, De Biase was voted the country's top baseball player in 1999 and played for them in the 1995 Pan American Games. In 2003, he began playing baseball in Italy, in Serie A2. He helped Argentina win the 2004 South American Championship, their first South American Championship they won outright. He debuted in Serie A1 in 2005 and hit .342/.415/.503, finishing second in Serie A1 in average behind Wady Almonte. He led in slugging, .001 ahead of Almonte, was 6th in OBP and second to Claudio Liverziani in OPS. He also played for Italy in the 2005 European Championship. In 2006, De Biase batted .272/.305/.408 in Serie A1 and helped his team to the European Cup and Italian Cup titles. He was named MVP of the 2006 European Cup, the first Cup title for San Marino.
In 2007, De Biase again lit up Serie A1, with a .360/.432/.515 batting line. He won the batting title by 15 points over Giuseppe Mazzanti, was 7th in OBP, 7th in OPS and led with 59 hits. He won the Robert Fontana Award as the top utility man in Serie A1. He was Italy's DH and cleanup hitter when they finished a disappointing 7th in the 2007 European Championship. In that tournament, De Biase produced at a .417/.500/.625 clip and led the team with 5 RBI in 7 games. He was hit by three pitches in the tournament. De Biase hit .455/.500/.682 with 7 RBI in five games in the 2007 European Cup as the top hitter for 4th place San Marino.
De Biase hit .520/~.571/.800 for Italy in the 2007 Baseball World Cup, leading the team in average, OBP, slugging and runs (5). His 5 RBI were one behind team leader Mario Chiarini. He had two of the team's four hits in a tough 1-0 loss to Taiwan which kept them out of the semifinals. Only Trent Oeltjen had a higher average in the event, as De Biase beat out numerous major leaguers and Cuban stars. De Biase was named to the Cup All-Star team at DH, the only player to be honored from a team that did not make the quarterfinals.
In the 2008 Italian Baseball League, Max batted .294/.361/.411 for a significant decline. His 33 RBI tied Chiarini for third in the league.
De Biase hit .368/.455/.474 in the 2008 European Cup and led T&A San Marino with 4 RBI as they finished third in the Grosseto phase of the Cup. In the 2008 Italian Series, Max drove in 10 runs in 7 games to help San Marino win its first title ever. He won MVP honors for the Series. He followed with a 2-for-8 performance in the 2008 European Cup Final Four.
During the Matino phase of the 2009 European Cup, De Biase went 7 for 12 with a homer and 6 RBI. He tied teammate Willie Vasquez for the lead in average and RBI but San Marino failed to advance to the Final Four. During the 2009 Italian Baseball League season, Max hit .293/.385/.427 with 29 RBI in 42 games. He was 10th in RBI.
In 2010, De Biase batted .336/.462/.452 with 24 walks and 7 strikeouts in 172 plate appearances. He finished third in average behind Carlos Duran and Orlando Muñoz, led in OBP (.006 over Muñoz), ranked 7th in slugging and tied Marcos Yepez for 4th with 31 RBI. He hit .250/.375/.350 in the Rotterdam phase of the 2010 European Cup then went 4 for 8 with two doubles and two runs as their top player in the Final Four. Max played for the Argentinian national team in the 2010 Pan American Games Qualification Tournament and was one of their top hitters; in their loss to Venezuela, he got their only hit.
Sources: Baseball.it, Italian Baseball and Softball Federation, Argentinian players of the year, Defunct IBAF site, 2008 European Cup, 2009 European Cup in Matino, Baseballdecuba coverage of 2010 Pan American Games Qualifiers