During pregame ceremonies, the third annual Greg Montalbano Award was presented to former Framingham State College star Orazio Azzarello.
The award is named in memory of Greg Montalbano, a former Red Sox minor-league pitcher who was only 31 when he died of cancer in 2009. A native of Westborough and later a standout at Northeastern University, Montalbano was a participant in the Oldtime Baseball Game in 1997 and ’98. Selected by the Red Sox in the fifth round of the 1999 amateur draft, Montalbano played six seasons of professional baseball before illness ended his career. In 2001, he was named Minor League Pitcher of the Year by the Red Sox.
The award, instituted in 2010, is presented to a former participant in the Oldtime Baseball Game who best exemplifies Greg’s spirit, competiveness and good nature. Azzarello played in seven editions of the Oldtime Baseball Game, from 1995 to 2001.
As has become custom in the Oldtime Baseball Game, Azzarello plans to come out of retirement to play in the 2012 game. The award’s inaugural recipient, former Northeastern University outfielder Todd Korchin, began the tradition by playing in the 2010 game. 2011′s recipient, Boston Red Sox scouting coordinator Steve Langone, also played in the game.