Above: Glendora’s Joe Winterburn is greeted by Bishop Amat’s Jerry McClanahan after hitting a home run during the SGV all-star game Sunday at Moor Field in Alhambra.
By Nathan Cambridge, Correspondent
Sunday’s 15th annual San Gabriel Valley All-Star Game played at Alhambra High School’s Moor Field marked an opportunity for 49 high school seniors to represent their schools for the final time. The Red team took it to another level by hitting three home runs in a 12-7 victory over the Blues. Glendora’s Joe Winterburn, starting at catcher for the Red team, hit a three-run home run in the first inning. Winterburn won overall MVP honors to add to a resume that included winning a CIF-SS Division2 championship on Saturday.
“It’s just really unbelievable to win CIF,” said Winterburn, who will attend UC Santa Barbara. “I mean, it hasn’t happened ever in Glendora history, so I just thought it was really cool. I had a great time.
“Playing all year, keeping on track with everything, just carried into this game because I never stopped playing. So I just kept rolling.”
The Red team’s D.J. Wallace, of Charter Oak, hit a two-run home run in the fourth inning. Wallace, who will play at Southern University on a baseball scholarship next year, took home the game’s offensive MVP award.
“It was great to suit up in my Charter Oak uniform one last time,” Wallace said. “I felt confident with the swing (on the home run) and when it went out I felt like I was doing what I was supposed to do.”
San Dimas pitcher Derek Penilla of the Blue team took home the Cory Lidle Most Valuable Pitcher Award. Penilla, who will play next year at Mt. SAC, pitched the fifth and sixth innings, allowed one hit and struck out two.
“I didn’t think I was going to be here a year ago,” Penilla said. “I worked hard and got here. I wasn’t expecting (the award) at all, not at all.
“I’m excited. I’m super happy I got it.”
The game’s final home run was a two-run shot in the eighth inning by the Red team’s Efren Aguilera. Red teammate Christian Ibarra, from South Hills, was the defensive player of the game for his play at shortstop.
Maranatha’s Danny Beckwith, who is heading to Azusa Pacific University, pitched the fourth inning. He gave up the Wallace home run but also struck out two.
“I got to watch one of my teammates play, one of my best friends,” Minutemen teammate Dylan Covey said of Beckwith, “and it was a fun experience.”
Covey was in uniform but did not play, presumably to protect against injury. He is projected to be an early pick in today’s amateur draft.
“I really don’t know what to expect (in the draft),” he said. “I’ve heard a lot of different things, so I guess today is my last day to be a kid.”
It was a change in venue for the long-running game. In recent years it has been played at Mt. SAC, but this year it was switched to Moor Field.
“I would have gotten to play on my home field next year,” said Blue team infielder Robert Nakamura, who will play for the Mounties next year. “But Alhambra is a nice field.”