Seven former Atlantic League players saw action in a first-round game of the World Baseball Classic featuring Canada and Italy, including two York Revolution alumni. Shawn Hill (York 2012) earned the start for Canada, and took the loss — surrendering two runs in 2 2/3 innings of Italy’s 14-4 eight-inning game. Only diehard Revs fans might remember Chris Cooper (York 2007), who pitched three innings of two-hit relief for Italy. Cooper has only appeared in the United States for one season (pitching at Triple-A in 2009) since finishing the 2007 season.
Mike Costanzo (Camden 2010) started in left field for Italy, going 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles and two walks. Anthony Granato (Atlantic City 2007-08/Somerset 2008-09) started at short and went 2-for-3. Brian Sweeney (Somerset 2011) recorded a hold for striking out a batter, and Dan Serafini (Bridgeport 2012) pitched 2 2/3 innings for Italy.
R.J. Swindle (Newark 2007) didn’t record an out in relief for Canada.
Hill reached the majors last season, winning a game for the Blue Jays after starting the season in York. He’s trying to earn a spot with the Tigers this spring, and pitched against the Yankees last Friday.