- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 1", Weight 230 lb.
Alex Sambucci played for the Italian team in the 2006 World Junior Championship. He remained with them for the 2007 European Junior Championship, hitting .200/.360/.550 with 7 RBI in 5 games as they won Gold. He led the tourney in RBI and tied for the lead in both triples (2) and home runs (1). In 2008, he hit .303/.398/.521 in Serie A2 with 39 RBI and 35 runs in 35 games. During the 2008 European Junior Championship, Sambucci batted .412/.500/.647 with 5 runs and 8 RBI in five games as Italy won Silver. He was second in RBI behind Michael Stephan. He also played in the 2008 World Junior Championship and was in the 2008 MLB European Academy.
In 2009, Sambucci made it to the Italian Baseball League with Parma. He hit only .220/.279/.386 but went deep 5 times in 132 AB, leading his club. He was listed as one of Italy's potential players for the 2009 Baseball World Cup but did not make the final cut. He fell to .222/.289/.299 in 2010. He still made Italy's squad for the 2010 Intercontinental Cup and started at 1B. He batted .250/.375/.300 with 3 runs and 1 RBI in 7 games, handling 63 chances error-free, entering the Bronze Medal Game. He scored the winning run in the 9th against Nicaragua, singling off Carlos Perez and scoring on a Juan Carlos Infante home run. He scored the winning runs against Japan's Katsuki Akagawa and South Korea as well. Entering the placement games, he tied future AL MVP José Abreu for the tournament lead in most chances without an error. He was 0 for 3 with a walk in the Bronze Medal Game but Italy won its only medal in an Intercontinental Cup.
Alex starred for Parma in the 2011 European Cup's opening round, with a homer off Keino Perez of the Rouen Huskies and going 4 for 4 with 3 runs and 3 RBI against Draci Brno. He hit .412/.476/.647 with 5 runs and 6 RBI in 5 games, handling 44 chances without a miscue. He was among the leaders in the Parma pool in average (tied Tom Brice for 6th), slugging (3rd, after Rodney Medina and Jeffrey Arends), OBP (tied for 5th with Riccardo Suardi), runs (tied Willie Vásquez for 4th), RBI (tied Medina and Arends for 2nd, one behind Jairo Ramos Gizzi), homers (tied for 1st, 1), total bases (11, tied for 3rd with Luca Scalera and Anthony Granato) and double plays turned (6, tied Richard Montiel for 1st). He did not appear in the Cup Final Four, with Leonardo Zileri playing 1st instead for Parma. His regular season performance in the 2011 IBL was not that good - .222/.296/.314.
In 2012, he produced at a .243/.327/.378 clip with 28 RBI in 40 games for Parma. The next year, he was at .264/.424/.361 with 19 walks and 22 RBI in 22 games, finishing 6th in the league in RBI and tied Luca Martone for 6th in walks. He was named the All-Star first baseman for the season. His batting line in 2014 read .270/.389/.354. He won both a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger at 1B.
Playing for Italy in the 2014 European Championship, he started at first. Entering the Gold Medal Game, he had batted .296/.441/.556 with 8 runs and 6 RBI in 8 games, homering twice (off Belgium's Steve De Saedeleer and Sweden's Kent Karlsson. His 56 error-free chances led all players (six ahead of Andy Paz and Jon Cramman), while his 7 double plays turned tied Felix Brown and Infante for 5th. In the Gold Medal Game, he struggled from the cleanup spot, striking out twice against the Netherlands' Rob Cordemans and then once again David Bergman while also making a rare error in the field, then was replaced by Gabriele Ermini late in the 6-3 loss.
The big infielder moved to Fortitudo Bologna for 2015. He hit .350/.435/.350 with six runs in five games in the first round of the 2015 European Cup, handling 46 chances error-free; he had a three-hit game against the Solingen Alligators. He tied Infante, Markus Stryczek and Guillermo Rodríguez for 6th in runs and only Dustin Hughes had more chances with a 1.000 fielding. In the final phase, he was 4 for 11 with a walk, finishing 6th in average and hits while leading with 31 error-free chances (8 ahead of Rien Vernooij).
For the regular 2015 IBL season, his batting line was .326/.444/.435 with 26 RBI, 10 doubles and 18 walks in 28 games. He tied Cesar Suarez for 2nd in doubles, was 2nd in RBI (one behind former major leaguer Carlos Maldonado), tied Stefano De Simoni for 8th in walks, was 6th in average, 8th in OBP and 7th in OPS. Bologna fell to Rimini in the 2015 Italian Series. He finished his busy year representing Italy in the 2015 Premier 12, going 3 for 12 with a walk and a homer, while fielding .972; his solo homer off Chun-Lin Kuo gave Italy their only run in a loss to Taiwan.
Alex batted .231/.333/.308 in the 2016 European Champions Cup going into the 3rd/4th place game and had handled 38 chances without an error. He scored the game-winning run against Heidenheim Heideköpfe, drawing a walk from Marcel Giraud and scoring on a Paolino Ambrosino hit. Martin Mužík and Simone Albanese also had 1.000 fielding percentages, in more chances. In the 3rd/4th place game, he had 10 putouts and one assist while going 1 for 5 in a 7-6 win over Neptunus.
That summer in Italy, he led the league with 30 RBI (the B-R register has incomplete stats). He hit a big three-run shot off José Escalona in Game 3 of the 2016 Italian Series and Bologna would win the title. In the 2016 European Championship, he struggled at .174/.344/.174 entering the placement games but did score six runs in eight games, including three against Croatia. He again played flawless defense (in 55 chances). He tied Blake Ochoa for 2nd-most chances by someone with no errors, behind Curt Smith. He also tied for 5th in walks (6), tied for 2nd with two sacrifice flies (one behind Max Boldt). Against the Netherlands, he pinch-hit for Mattia Mercuri and hit a sac fly off Kevin Kelly to put Italy ahead, 5-3, in the 10th, but they did not hold on and they finished with the Bronze Medal.
At the 2017 European Champions Cup, he had three runs in a loss to Neptunus and three hits in a win over Rouen (including a homer off Yoann Vaugelade). He was 1 for 3 with a walk and a run in the finale, another loss to Neptunus. For the Cup, he hit .533/.667/.867 with seven RBI in five games, with 37 putouts, 6 assists and no errors. He tied Jonathan Jaspe for 2nd in average (.032 behind Ambrosino), was 4th in total chances by someone without an error (between Francesco Imperiali and Martin Kipphan), was second in slugging (behind Gabriel Fromental-Houle), led in OBP (.039 ahead of Ambrosino), tied for 3rd in hits (one behind Ambrosino and future MLBer Robel García), tied Ambrosino and Gianison Boekhoudt for 3rd in RBI and tied for 2nd with 12 total bases (two behind García).
In the 2017 IBL, he hit .304/.441/.452 with 26 runs and 27 RBI in 33 games for Bologna. He tied Oscar Angulo for 3rd in RBI, was 9th in walks (between De Simoni and Jose Ferrini), was 7th in runs and tied for 9th with 3 homers. With Italy for the 2018 Haarlem Baseball Week, he batted .158/.370/.158 with 7 walks in 7 games, with 47 chances in the field and no errors. He tied Gilmer Lampe for the event lead in walks.
Returning to Parma for 2018, he was at .271/.441/.447 with 18 walks and 22 RBI in 27 games. He tied Nathanael Batista and Mazzanti for 7th in the league in RBI and tied Charlie Mirabal for 4th in walks. He was excellent in the 2018 Italian Series (5 for 12, 3 R, 5 BB in 4 G) when Parma fell to his old Bologna mates. He was second in the Series in average (.012 behind Kevin Moesquit), 1st in OBP (.009 ahead of Moesquit), tied for fourth in runs, 2nd in walks (one behind Mazzanti) and was second in total chances for a 1.000 fielding percentage (36, 6 behind Osman Marval).
He was 5 for 16 with a walk, homer, three runs and three RBI in four games in the 2019 European Champions Cup. For the regular season in Italy, he hit .253/.367/.373 in 2019. He batted .265/.425/.368 with 15 runs, 15 RBI and 15 walks in 25 games in 2020. He tied Aldo Koutsoyanopulos for 10th in walks.
In the 2021 European Champions Cup, he split 1B and DH with Cesare Astorri. He hit a three-run homer off Murilo Gouvêa of defending champion Bologna in a 5-4 semifinal win. In the finale, he took Christian Tomsich of the Bonn Capitals deep in the 4th to break a 3-3 tie. With a 4-3 lead the next inning, he doubled off Samuel Steigert to score Astorri then came around to score in a 6-4 victory; it was Parma's first European Cup win of the 21st Century after 13 titles in the 20th Century. He had also previously gone deep off the Amsterdam Pirates' Kevin Geestman. He finished the event at .333/.455/.944 with the 3 homers, 6 runs and 7 RBI in 5 games. In a high-offense Cup, he only tied for 5th in home runs, was 9th in slugging and tied for 5th in total bases (17) with Lampe and Gary Owens. Given his clutch hits, though, he was named Cup MVP.
- Old CEB website
- Mister Baseball
- Defunct IBAF site
- 2010 Intercontinental Cup Final Report
- Italian Baseball and Softball Federation
- World Baseball and Softball Confederation
- 2018 Haarlem Baseball Week
- 2018 Italian Series
- WBSC Europe