Meet the Pittsburgh catcher who has made waves with the Pirates and in Italy

Apr 22, 2019 597

Few Italian-Americans have made as big an impact on the world of baseball as 33-year-old, Francisco Cervelli. Born in Valencia, Venezuela, Cervelli had an Italian immigrant father, Manuel, who encouraged him to play baseball during his youth in Venezuela. What happened next Cervelli could only have dreamt of when starting out in Venezuela. He was eventually scouted by Major League Baseball giants, the New York Yankees.

During Cervelli’s time playing baseball in his homeland, he was a shortstop, second baseman and an occasional pitcher. He had never been utilized as a catcher in his life, but that was the potential the Yankees saw in him. At the tender age of 17, the Yankees were very taken by Cervelli’s athletic build and his hand-eye co-ordination. They gave him the chance of a lifetime to sign for the Yankees as an international free agent on the proviso that he would try his hand at being a catcher.

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