The Greek National Team just completed its participation in the 2023 European Baseball Championship in Czech Republic with a 13th place finish out of 16 countries. The Greeks were faced with an extremely tough group with eventual champion Spain, host Czech Republic and Austria in Ostrava, CZ. Spain won the gold medal over Great Britain in the final. Meanwhile, Kingdom of the Netherlands secured the bronze medal.
Hellas finished group play 1-2 with a win over Austria in game 3. Hellas lost game 1 to Spain 14-1 on a cold rainy morning to kickoff the tournament and then fell to Czechia 14-0 in front of a sold out Ostrava crowd on Monday night. The Greeks rebounded with a strong win over Austria 11-6 behind Daniel Gosselin's strong start and Peter Dudunakis' career game. This win was manager Chris Demetral's 1st career European Championship win as the man in charge of the blue and white.
Hellas did not qualify for the quarterfinals and was sent to the relegation bracket in Brno to face Belgium. The Greeks fell 5-4 to Belgium behind Dimitri Kourtis' strong start. They were tied 4-4 in the 9th until Drew Janssen hit a go-ahead solo homerun. With this loss, Hellas was in a must-win situation the next 2 games to qualify for the 2025 European Championship. Hellas went on to beat Hungary and Ukraine to avoid relegation and punch their ticket to Tel Aviv where Israel will be hosting the 2025 tournament. Daniel Gosselin was fantastic vs Ukraine, going 7+ innings of 3 run ball.
Statistically speaking, a few players had a great championship, Catcher Antonio Torres led the team with a .455 average and 6 RBIs. A few players made their national team debuts this week: Akili Carris, Peter Dudunakis and Kasey Caras. All 3 players were mainstays in the starting lineup and were 3 of the top 4 team leaders in batting average. Caras and Dudunakis combined for 3 homeruns and 3 doubles in 6 games.
Hellas finished the championship 3-3, finishing at .500 or better for the 1st time since the 2012 squad went 4-2 in the Netherlands. Also, they hit .300 as a team, which is the best team batting average since 2003 where the team hit .315. Greece will be back in action in summer of 2024 in the Prague Baseball Week.