Baseball Rankings: Huge home-and-home games in the Sierra and Miramonte League title races


Above: Glendora coach Dan Henley doing a terrific job with the Tartans and working the umpires.

Tribune Baseball Rankings
1. Bishop Amat (14-2)
— I flirted with dropping Amat behind Glendora because the Tartans do own two tournament titles and their only loss was a 1-0 setback at Diamond Bar against lefty. Then I started looking at Amat’s schedule again, who they beat and wised up.
2. Glendora (13-1-1) — After winning the Arcadia tournament, the Tartans are No. 2 in D-2 but still can’t breathe that easy in the tight Sierra League race, where the top four teams are separated by a single game.
3. South Hills (11-3) — What I learned about the Huskies in the National Classic is that their pitching is deeper than I thought, and they’re a tough bunch of kids, battling back from an 0-2 start to win two straight. Mentally, that’s going to help them a lot the rest of the way.
4. Bonita (11-2-1) – All they have done is win ten straight, and I don’t care if they didn’t win the Northview tournament (because of tiebreakers), they were the best team. But then again, they will have to prove it with two games against Charter Oak this week.
5. Damien (9-4) – Lost in the championship of the Chino tournament to Maranatha, but this is the week. With two games against Chino Hills, the Spartans have a lot on the line. They can put the pressure on Glendora with a sweep.
6. Charter Oak (9-5) – The champions of the Northview tournament deserve more credit than we’ve given them, and look at the Miramonte League, they dominated the Northview tournament. While the Sierra is the best league in the Valley, the Miramonte is not that far behind.
7. Los Altos (11-5) - The only place they’ve struggled is during Miramonte League games, which is looking like a tougher league each week. They’re having too good a season to continue faltering in league, so look for them to rebound.
8. Diamond Bar (10-5) — When will they throw Mathews against Glendora? Will they do it on Wednesday on the road, or wait until their home Friday. Personally, I would use lefty all ten innings, probably in a relief role if they need him Wednesday, then start him at home on Friday.
9. Northview (8-4-2) — The best in one of the weakest Valle Vista Leagues races in years. I still say the Vikings can hang with anyone when Pedroza’s on the mound, but the jury is still out. VVL teams haven’t done much in area tournaments.
10. Sierra Vista (9-4) — Congratulations to longtime coach Brett Stevens, who recently won his 300th game. After all these years, the passion is still there, and the Dons are still winning.

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  • SGV

    Going to be some good baseball being played this week.
    Which game you going to attend Fred?
    I like the Glendora vs D-Bar match up, i think that series will determine the league title.
    Just a question who do you think is the best team in the SGV with their ace on the hill?

  • FredJ

    Honell is covering Bonita-Charter Oak baseball today, and I’m covering them on Thursday. I’m also covering Diamond Bar at Glendora Wednesday and Damien at Chino Hills on Friday. Ramirez will cover Damien hosting Chino Hills Wednesday and Glendora Diamond Bar Friday…We got all the biggies covered.

    … To answer your question, I will take Amat and Paez over anyone, with Plutko and Glendora No. 2, and Mathews and Diamond Bar No. 3. Then as crazy as it might sound, I would probably go with Pedroza and Northview at No. 4.

  • BAHS

    This is probably no surprise, but I’d take AMAT with Paez on the hill. With the numbers he has put up against the competition that he has faced, you gotta go with Paez. Paul has been lights out ONCE AGAIN this year. Plus you through in the AMAT sticks and it’s really a no brainer. Now that being said, What about a three game series???

  • BAHS

    Sorry, Type-o, I meant to say/type, “THROW” in the AMAT sticks.

  • BullPen

    Hey SGV, I agree,there will be some good ball being played this week. I do however think that the Glendora/Dbar series is too early to decide the SL champions. That league race always comes down to the last week. I think that if Damien or Chino Hills sweeps this week, that winner will play a role in the SL championship. My 2 cents. Amat #1 with Paez, Dbar #2 with Matthews and Glendora #3 with Plutko.

  • Bill

    Teams ranked in top 10 are fairly accurate in Freds poll. The 1 and 2 teams are clearly the best two teams and can be flip flopped and no one could argue. I saw where KH mentioned coaches and the jobs they do…here’s a few opinions of a few coaches I’ve seen over the years.
    Torres from CV- Can you say Egomaniac…This is hardly just my opinion…coaches fairly well, but this guy looks in mirror for hour a day I’m sure. Fundamentally sound teams, but predictable.

    Quinley- teams are ready at right time of year. Unortodoxed methods, kinda old school, but wins like he smokes…A LOT. Gotta respect a guy whose passion is his field.

    Knott- one of best coaching jobs of the year. Lost almost all his guns from last year, but has this group really playing well. This group could knock off Charter Oak’s hold on the Miramonte League finally.

    Smith- coaches good teams well…but has a team of his ever overachieved…no, because at south hills you always have more talent than your opponent. Wonder how he’d do on the other end of the talent pool. Just saying what all others are thinking.

    Murphy- May surprise you also, but this could one of better coaching jobs as well. Name a guy besides Pedroza and catcher Valenzuela you knew coming back. Replaced every position player, but catcher from last years team and they are 9-4-1 with two of the losses coming to Glendora 3-1 and Bonita 2-1. Knott and Murphy coaching jobs are similar and equally impressive this year.

    Henley- We all knew this was THE TEAM he’s been waiting for. give him credit, they’re living up to the hype thus far, but a gray cloud hangs over this team at this time of year until they quiet all the haters who say they will fold under pressue late in the year. That is on Henley this year if it happens again because this is most talented team in the SGV.

    * These coaches are possibly most recognized in the area, I could be missing one or two…is it coincidence that the high profile programs all come from upper class areas, with the exception of Northview? That’s my two cents.

  • Not impressed

    Bill

    Would have to agree with you except for Henley. The guy hasn’t performed in his league since the 03-04 season, when they were stacked like this year. Anybody could win with those pitching staffs in a HS setting.

    When has he “coached up” like guys like Murphy, Knott, Smith, Quin, or even big John from Nogales? A record of 30-44-1 in league over the last five years doesn’t cut it!

  • ?

    Hey what about Big Fermano at Los Altos hahahhahaha J/K!

  • Joe

    I agree about Henley and Glendora over last 5-6 years with you. I just said that I have to say they are living up to the hype so far with the expectations everyone had for this team. Only strange result is the tie with Temple City, but that was a tournament game. No shame in gettng beat by Matthews 1-0 on the road.

    Also agree with some of the coaches opinions. I’ve come to realize that a good way to measure a coaches impact is to see them in a year following a championship or when the roster is completely revamped. Do they continue to win and develop guys or do they get good again when the next big group of talent comes in? I am an old Bonita grad, so I’ve seen the programs Bonita, Charter Oak, Northview, and other local teams quite a bit. Wasn’t sure with Knot for a few years and if kids were responding, but he does a good job now that I’ve seen this team play a few times. Charter Oak won a cif title and stayed atop the league standings for few years after- was impressed with that. Northview broke our hearts many times in some big games lately. A feisty bunch always and gritty. Had to say I really didn’t see the season they’re having coming with all that championship team graduating last year, but hats off to them. Glad we finally beat them last week. Don’t know Smith well, so won’t comment.

  • infoman

    Not impressed, Big John from Nogales? Calling him “big” you obviously dont know him. But yes hes been a very good coach for a long time and deserves to be on top of alot of these guys listed for sure. The problem i have is alot of coaches could do well at most of these schools mentioned. Most of the talent in the sgv goes to these schools. So how much of it is talent and how much is coaching? And to be fair to Henley at Glendora, who by the way i dont care for as a solid type coach, hes had to compete at the div 2 level while these other coaches listed perform in div3 and 4. A BIG difference in who theyre facing on a day in and day out basis.

  • Money

    Bill,

    you are absolutely right when you say that most of these top notch teams are from upper class areas. My answer to that is because baseball is a rich kid sport as the kids get older. All of these kids played on expensive travel ball teams and had expensive private coaches.

    The blue collar, hard working sports are football, basketball, and especially wrestling.

    And no I am not knocking the sport of baseball, but just observing.

  • Not Impressed

    Infoman

    1. Know “Big” John very well. Doesn’t have to be a big man to do big things at Nogales. Look up the record. Guy simply puts out a good product over the years..

    2. The Sierra league has nothing to do with it. For the years in question, Henley lost to some of these coaches that were mentioned.

    3. They draw for a bigger pool of talent, but he didnt get it done. The record clearly show it! This debate has been touched on for years.

    4. Besides KH(truth hurts), Bonita is quietly and humbly winning games. They don’t have super stars or “I” guys this year, but they seem to have come together as a team. I guess they believe in a system that is working so far. To me, that’s a coach!

    5. The job Murphy is doing at Northview is another example of how some of these guys just seem to bring teams together.

    Henley just doesn’t fit that bill without having stacked teams and wouldnt be on my list. Maybe the wondering over to Bonita every year didnt teach him much as a coach. Just goes to show, some ex-minor guys cant coach!

  • Northview???

    Northview = senior transfers, there is no rebuilding there. The kids played varsity at another school. When he starts developing kids from within his own program then put him on the list….. OUT!!!

  • kh

    money.
    thats far from the truth ,that baseball is a upper class game.
    no way.dosnt cost any money to throw your son or daughter b.p. and hit fly balls to them.
    ive been hitting k.c fly balls for 14 years now strenghing his arm with long toss ,year in and out. its free my friend.
    travelball we dont waste are time and money with that crap either.why burn them out when the long run he will be playing this game for along time,hopefully by the grace of god.

  • kh

    money.
    thats far from the truth ,that baseball is a upper class game.
    no way.dosnt cost any money to throw your son or daughter b.p. and hit fly balls to them.
    ive been hitting k.c fly balls for 14 years now strenghing his arm with long toss ,year in and out. its free my friend.
    travelball we dont waste are time and money with that crap either.why burn them out when the long run he will be playing this game for along time,hopefully by the grace of god.

  • Cameron Saylor

    To some it appears that baseball is an elitest sport, when it’s actually the most affordable sport available at the recreational level. Little League and Pony range from $80 to $100 per season. Football and Soccer $150 to $250 depending on the area. Each of these sports have travel circuits, camps showcases etc. The shame is specialized training and the opportunists have promised Big League Dreams if you pay for it. Usually it’s more like Broken Dreams.

    Today travel baseball has exploded into a money making machine where parents pay up to $300 per month to be on the team plus tournaments, lessons game fees and more. The bottom line is the kid has to first be an athlete, you can’t buy talent if first the ability is not there.

    This is the unfortunate nature of Travel Baseball today. However there are a still a few purests that teach the game for the love of the game. The West Covina Dukes are one of the few that still have volunteer coaches now in their 23rd year of Travel Baseball. There is fee of $30 per month for 10 months or $300 per year. Those fees go right back into the program and complex.

    The SGV Arsenal are very simiar in their fee structure and both Play out of Maverick Field in West Covina.

    Under the Maverick Baseball Academy both the Dukes and Arsenal continue to develop, promote and push talent to the next level from High School to College and beyond.

  • Really?

    Saylor

    The Dukes and Arsenal organizations are no different, except play a weaker circuit in the fall. Most serious travel teams play 2-3 tourneys a month!

    If you have an understanding of the game, KH is right, go work with your kid, because most coaches in these clubs are “Daddy Ball” guys living through there kid and have limited knowledge of the game.

  • Cameron Saylor

    Agreed there is no substitute for working your kid out regularly on your own. Travel ball will not buy or get you anything if your not willing to work on your own. If your are not serious about the game then whats the point?

    The Dukes program will teach your son both the fundamental and mental aspects of the game. Need confirmation ask any of the local HS coaches, they will confirm that when a Duke player comes in as a freshmen their baseball IQ and skill is at the top of that respective baseball class.

    A baseball study among professional players that made it showed the difference between making it and not is 25,000 hours of baseball work over from the ages of 12 & 25. If the average player put 25 per week with his own team thats another 12 per week on their own over & above normal games and practices.

    The Dukes program has come and gone with Dads as coaches. It’s unfortunate but sometimes a necessary part of keeping the program going. Today in the Dukes Program of the 10 Dukes coaches 3 are Dad’s. On the Dukes 14 National- ZERO Dad coaches.

    The Arsenal four teams ZERO Dad coaches.

    The Dukes play Tournaments every year, hosting several. USSA, Triple Crown, Super Series are all diluted down and ultra expensive $600 for a three or four game guarantee. Come on who’s benefitting from that? Travel ball is the new rec ball because every Dad wants his kid to be a star so they start a team.

    Dukes 14′s play 16U baseball in the winter because 14U winter baseball is watered down no matter who the host. The Dukes 14U teams always compete at 16U ball with a better than 700% winning record at the 16U level. In the Spring playing High School Tournaments in June & July against JV and Varsity Teams making the semis and or finals every tournament.

    As for teaching the game, we have player packets & educational tools that take the learning from the field to paper and back again. Real information tangible and proven.

    Additionally we host 8 FREE winter works outs (Between Dec 15th & Jan 31)to anyone ages 12 and up designed in a clinic format to further teach the game.

    Stations include:
    Catching
    Pitching
    Hitting Mechanics
    Opposite Field Hitting
    Infield
    Outfield
    Base Running
    Mental Baseball

    Two stations per night 45 minute per station over 80 kids participated per work out the last two years for FREE.

    On top of the clinics, both the Dukes and Arsenal have open work outs for players not in the program when either team is practicing. Practices are held Tuesday Wednesday & Thursday. Come see for yourself, contact the Dukes or Arsenal bring your kid out to see if we measure up. If not there’s probably an organization willing to take as much of your money as they can get.

  • kh

    please dont turn your great dukes into a travelball blog.
    we played at the compton mlb baseball for free last two summer and went to the jr.gig in az. and paid only 100 for 10 days and nights plus the boys took a big league bus. all the instructor are minor or ex big leaguer. mr.duke
    now this summer he will play there again in the rbi league which i heard there going to n.y. not some travelball world serie every other week,.i know biil buff has chanced the dukes dream,at some point all the kids have played travelball,but somer or later the boys going to have to wipe his owe ass.

  • BUFF THIS

    The Duke program has come and gone! Your winning % is joke and against who? CABA league MR. Duke? Come on Jimmy and Billy the dog doesn’thurt anymore!

    KH -classic!

    The Dukes program used to be good way back. Now the Arsenal joined the ship and alot of there players are trained outside the program. Wonder why??

  • Dukes Who?

    What Duke freshman Duke player is at the top of there game? And list the schools! Please start with Bonita..

    And how many Arsenal players walked of the field or quit? Please start with Claremont! LOL

    You guys are so full of s$it!

  • sgvbaseball.com

    We have had zero players walk off the field or quit thier HS teams. If you have issue please go ahead and get in touch with us and let me who those players are. There is another program that a few of Claremont HS players have left their HS team to play in their Spring league.

    KH, when are going to get in touch so we can talk some baseball. We may now a lot of the same scouts.

  • Cameron Saylor

    There is no doubt the Dukes program went though a rough time a few years back, almost belly up won’t disagree with anyone, Dukes lost their direction and focus but now it’s back.

    Here are the schools in the local area that have former Dukes & current Arsenal players but will reserve the names as the thrash talkers who like to hide being anonymous will take their little pot shots.

    Bonita – 4
    Damien – 8
    South Hills – 9
    Los Altos – 3
    Bishop Amat – 5
    Claremont – 7
    Charter Oak – 1
    Nogales – 1
    Ayala – 2
    Diamond Bar – 3
    West Covina – 1
    San Dimas – 1

    Need varification check the webiste, names and schools are listed.

    Nine freshmen started on Varsity the last two years at there respective high schools. Including the two frehmen that played a pivitol role in beating Bonita last year and went on to win CIF. Not hard to figure that one out!

    The last two Aresenal teams 2012 & 2013 both had 10 plus Dukes players make the team the balance of 8 to 10 came from outside the Dukes program. Every Duke player trys out just like ereryone else outside the Maverick program – no entitlement. Dukes & Arsenal two seperate programs.

    There are a lot of good programs available, pick one that fits your son ABD, Playhard, EMBA, Blue Wave, RBI, 5 Tools Academy, Team Anderson etc. My original blog started with comments about affordable baseball pointing out what we do for the community beyond the game for FREE.

    We play and beat those high priced teams regularly, if anyone would like to play a game contact us through http://www.leaguelineup.com/WCdukes or http://www.californiadukes.com.
    Loser pays all the umpire fees!
    We’d love to play!

  • don’t knock it if you haven’t tried it

    it’s all about preparation for the next level which is what the Dukes and the Arsenal Programs do, do they win every game, of course not but do they need to in order to accomplish their goal ??no… seems the only haters of the 2 organizations are the people who can’t hang with it because today it would be very difficult to find an unhappy member of either… so you can go to your USSSA, Triple Crown World Series and all your pay to play tournaments that Grandma & Grandpa can go watch, I choose to to have my kid participate where the scouts come watch….the Dukes program hasn’t come & gone, it’s just got started again….

    it’s not even necessary to start naming names….all that matters is the compliments the high school coaches give to the organization…

  • cough cough

    Guess someone is choking on their words now – you asked.

  • kh

    heres what it sounds like.
    hi ken huth here.
    this summer again i will run the cannon baseball club.
    we will be in the senior babe ruth div.
    in previous years we have helped young men achive there goals in persueing there dreams.now saying that i will personally train your kid at 100 dollars a hour.we will work on this or her game in the fashion that other top coaches will see the results. he or she will have a better change then the aveage player.
    the cannons have put 3 to 4 players in the bigs.and 100or more players that played major college ball. we have about 10 or so still playing minor league ball.couple ex players are coaching at big time college ball.
    we took a break for awhile but some parents were tired of paying these after sdchool travel ball coaches bills,
    so i was asked to put in alittle community service once again,by the grace of god last night he asked me to call doug b .so today i will comfirm,that the cannon will be up and running.we have a small fee which covers the basic players needs.the rest like every year will come from the managers pocket,only because it gives a kid a place to be off the street.during the summer time where things can really change a young mans life.
    on the cannons all playes know there roles.in the old days the cannons were about winning and that was it.
    must be getting soft,because last year we started a new trend,of teaching winning not demanding it.
    things worked out great.so local h.s. are seeing that the young cannons come ready to win.and you guys at the dukes say you will play any team,we had three games with you guys last year and no shows.
    i know it happens.
    what am hereing is that you hold try-outs.that sucks so by saying that a kid whos not in the grove ,maybe a jv boy you can use some team fellowship,rub some shoulders with the up coming stud player has no chance making the dukes.
    the cannons are tottally in the other diriction my friend.
    i love taking the underdog,the flower hiddening under the big rose and putting a little water on his butt and watching him blossom into the same flower as the next one.
    we will not turn any player ever down that still wants to fill the love of the game,turned alot of young boys into future coaches.not everybody has to be a player,the coaches ,umps. score keepers.field mat.g.m. b.p. pitchers.the list gose on.
    the dukes thanks for waking me up on my call in my baseball life.
    love to help the helpless.

  • Goin yard

    Cameron

    The key word is former, meaning the past when the dukes were good. Still playing in the CABA league?

    Would love to see your 13U and 14u play against the comp of the higher paid programs for a complete season and then see how good you are? In the past Dukes tried to step out of CABA and got, we’ll lets just say a warm surprise! LOL

    You talk alot of crap but stay in your comfort zone every year! Next time KH calls you out for some games, show up, step up and play! This goes for the larger formats that you talk s@hit but don’t play either!

    Daddy ball is still at 30%? Doesn’t seem to be different than what you call travel ball is now rec ball.

  • Cameron Saylor

    Sorry KH you must have the Dukes confused with someone else – never heard of the Cannon Baseball Club. The Dukes have not had a team beyond 14U for over 5 years. We play Koufax 14U AABC Host our own Invitational Weeknight League you play Babe Ruth High School League 18U. We play CCYB 16u in the Winter with our 14U teams, fees per player $30 per month it all goes back into the complex maintenance, coaches are volunteers can’t say it enough.

    Thank you for the feedback, congrats on your success, glad we could help re-inspire your calling back to baseball.

    Don’t understand why it’s all about Bonita all the time. From your blogging it sounds like if it’s not from Bonita then it’s not worth a dam. I guess if you were offered gold for free and if it wasn’t mined from the hallowed grounds of Bonita then it must not be real!

    I’m not sure how many times it needs to be said, but here it is again – we do not charge for hitting lessons, I have a cage at home Dukes have a gage at Maverick, hitting lessons to anyone that wants them are FREE.

    Good luck this year in Babe Ruth it’s a great program with great talent.

    If you have a 14U team or for that matter a 16U team looking to play we have some availability in June and July as we prepare for the AABC Western (8 DIVISIONS FROM THE WESTERN US) Regional and AABC World Series (8 WINNERS FROM REGIONALS ACROSS THE US INCLUDING PUERTO RICO & MEXICO), both are bracketed tournament series that you have to win to move on – no pay to play.

  • Really?

    Saylor

    Do you host tryouts for what result? Players = fees = $. Come on, every organization or travel team has expenses. Overhead/Experience dictate fees and most clubs host free tryouts.

    Player packets for “Free” ? Dukes Coaching Dads not doing privates for $? With what experience? I guess the free tryout leads for additional dollars!

    Really, stop all the ads on the blog, it getting ridiculous!

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