Sporting News ranks Bishop Amat No. 17 in the nation, I’m not sure they’re No. 1 in our area

I could not find a link to the artice, but the February, 2011 edition of Sporting News ranks the top 25 high school baseball teams in the country, with Bishop Amat at No. 17 and the lone area team on the list. Look, I know Amat is good, they probably have the deepest fielding and hitting team in the area by far, but pitching wins championships and other area teams are deeper on the hill. In any case, here is what Sporting News wrote about the Lancers, who had some flattering words for the Big River, AKA, Rio Ruiz, who may have to help on the mound this season. That’s a scary thought for anyone who’s been on the receiving end of one of his passes in football. And if you ever shake his hand, you better shake it like a man or it’s going to hurt.


From the SPORTING NEWS: Putting runs on the board in 2011 should not be a problem for Bishop Amat, which returns one of the most talented teams in Southern California. The Lancers reached the traditionally tough CIF Southern Section quarterfinals last year and return USC-bound third baseman Rio Ruiz (.528-4-34), who has a chance to be a very high draft pick in 2012 as either a hitter or pitcher. He will have plenty of support in the batting order with senior first baseman Adrian Franco (.337-2-29) and junior outfielder Jordan McCraney (.333-3-21), who have committed to San Diego State and USC, respectively. Senior third baseman Bernardo Zavala (.327-4-30) and senior outfielder Jay Anderson (.340-4-23) also return. Pitching depth may be the key for Bishop Amat. Junior lefthander Daniel Zamora (5-1, 2.86) is the top returning hurler, but Ruiz has shown flashes of becoming a high-level pitching prospect, and his development could be the difference between a good or great season.

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  • EL Ojo

    Projected starting lineup for Bishop Amat

    1. Jay Anderson-CF
    2. Adrian Franco- 1B
    3. Rio Ruiz- 3B
    4. Wallace Gonzalez- RF
    5. Ryan Serrato- DH
    6. Bernardo Zavala- C
    7. Jordan McCraney- LF
    8. Andrew Medina- SS
    9. Jonathan Velasquez- 2B

    P- Daniel Zamora
    P- Ryan Serrato
    P- Eddie Munoz
    P- Javier Iniquez
    P- Jacob Dominquez
    P- Jordan McCraney
    P- Rio Ruiz

    Key reserves will be: Dominique Davis, Adam Alcantara, Brandon Castaneda, and David Higuera. They should have a powerful lineup. Coach Beck will find a way to get it done with his pitchers.

  • Amat Fan # 1

    Only time will tell Fred. Amat returns a lot of last years team but I will agree, PITCHING will be the key to Amats success, or lack thereof, for the team this year. If the Lancer staff can keep the ball on the ground and in the park, they have as good a shot as anybody. Coach Beck, if allowed to do his job, will put together a nice rotation and work through any tough pitching situations that may arise. Lot’s of “potential” offense returns for this team too. I won’t get on here and say “we would beat so and so” because as we all know anyone can beat anyone on a given day; however, if we play you and beat you then we/you have scoreboard until the next meeting proves different or the same. Love or hate it that’s how it is. Looking forward to a good year and Fred, you’ve been wrong before. Hopefully you’ll be proved wrong again.

  • just sayin’

    As we’ve always said.. Amat has a National reputation regardless of local public perception.

  • Baseball Rankings!

    Bishop Baseball team has the Most returners coming back. However, they have not did anything to be crowned as a area power. The problem I have with Amat Baseball, is that they should be in a higher division. They do have this years Best player in Rio Ruiz. We will see what happens. This is my all encompassing pre-season top 10. I left out Whittier schools. What do you think?

    1.Glendora
    2.Bonita
    3.Bishop Amat
    4.Damien
    5.South Hills
    6.Arcadia
    7.Northview
    8.Monrovia
    9.Walnut
    10.Maranatha

  • Pitching is the key

    High school baseball is funny. Socal is a talent rich area. Forget Divisions, forget leagues etc…When a school has 2 or 3 dominate pitchers come on their team, they become dominate. Most teams can hit, and play defense. However, Schools which have pitching, go far in the playoffs. Glendora has pitching, Bonita has pitching….thats why the went far. If Bishop’s pitching is great bishop will be. if their pitching is bad, Bishop will not go far. I don’t care how good Rio hits or how power packed their lineup is…does Bishop have the best pitchers in the area? That’s what should determine who’s ranked. I saw Bishop play against Orange Lutheran, their powerful hitting was limited by outstanding pitching. Time will tell.

  • baseballbaby

    fred, just skip over basketball, nobody cares, nobody comments, but as soon as you post anything baseball, we’re back in the game…Amat sucks

  • Amat On Looker

    El Ojo, who is Medina? Why is he in your projected line-up at SS? What happended to R. Ruiz or D. Davis or B. Castenada? How does this guy arrive at Amat and crack the “potential” line-up? Is he that good? Who is he and where did he come from?

  • Amat Dad

    Beck/Nieto certainly love their lefties. Hope that they use the pre-season to discover their other pitching talent. Rio is a ss/3rd player and that what may end up getting him to the pros.The offense will need to step up this year more than in past years. Catcher will need to play big Jerry Mc won’t be behind the dish this year and that’s a huge vacancy.

  • Don

    The problem is always replacing the contribution of your graduating Seniors.

    Glendora –
    Graduated: Woodward, Winterburn, Smigelski, Layton, Harwick, Cage, Shih
    Graduated Pitchers: Cage, Plutko, Smigelski, Winterburn, and Gonzales

    Bonita -
    Graduated: Tuttle, Ramos, Victoria, Highley
    Graduated Pitcher: Tuttle, Yepez, Pine

    Bishop Amat –
    Graduated: McClanahan, Eusebio
    Graduated Pitcher: Paez, McNitt

    Damien -
    Graduated: Oatman, Ortega, Lewis, Young, Granados, Larez, Uribe, Arnheim, Bast, Guillen, Sayegh,
    Pitchers Graduated: Guillen, Arnheim.

    South Hills -
    Graduated: Doyle, Morales, Ibarra, Sandoval, Roddy, Shirley
    Graduated Pitcher: Behr, Shirley

    I am a big fan of Coach Henley and especially of his ability to bring players along but it’s going to take a minor miracle to come within shouting distance of last years Tartan pitching and they all moved on. Run output was hit hard too although Glendora never seems to be short of hitters.

    At Bonita, the losses weren’t nearly as acute. Hardest hit was the power, the four guys named below provided about half the RBI’s last year. Pitching should be OK, but they need to replace the quality innings Yepez and Tuttle gave them.

    Amat lost about half of the innings from last season with the graduation of McNitt and Paez but offensively and defensively ought to even better this year everywhere except behind the plate.

    Damien is coming from the other direction with a lot of young arms, some tested, some, not so much. They will need to restock the batting order since about 70% of the run output graduated.

    Replacing Ibarra, Morales and Jake Shirley will be the problem at South Hills. Less so, All-Everything Catcher Cody Doyle who gives way to Cameron Saylor, a solid replacement. If they find someone to give them the innings Dakota Behr threw last year they should do well in the reformed Sierra.

    Northview will be fine, again; Murphy always finds a way, or a player, or something. The two lookout teams will be Covina and Los Altos, both young and skilled. Both who will also benefit greatly from a year of seasoning.

  • 0er-0df

    Word is that McCreery (LHP) from Bonita is nursing a bad elbow.

  • TeachDGame

    Don – I really enjoy your posts and you are very knowledgeable in the area… but I am going to take HUGE exception to one comment….

    South Hills – All Everything Catcher Cody Doyle giving way to a “solid” replacement in Cameron Saylor…. OMG your joking right…. CJ should have been the catcher on that team as a FROSH… you need to change your wording… solid player Cody Doyle is replaced by ALL Everything CJ Saylor…. come on really…. are you aware CJ just posted a legitimate 1.75 pop time in a National showcase…. it took Cody 1.75 seconds just to stand up and release the ball. Don’t want to knock Cody, good kid, solid player, but CJ is the BEST catcher on the West Coast and one of the Top 5 in the COUNTRY…. I don’t want to see CJ pitch, but he does hit 90 mph on the bump .. They are going to need some younger & untested players step up for sure… Could see some issues on the bump, so they could have some up and downs as their pitching goes… but I assure you, their issues will NOT be behind the plate, except for one Smith is forced to pitch CJ to get the job done.

  • Frank

    Can’t wait for beisbol! Only sports anyone cares about on this blog are Football, and Baseball.Anyway it is nice to see Amat get recognized, but it will all come down to what happens on the field. Amat does have to replace some great pitching, which they have, if not on varsity already, on their younger levels. I definitly see Amat going far this year as they should every year. But any thing short of the ring is a failed season.

  • robert

    Frank:
    It is better to remain quiet and be thought an idiot than to open your mouth and dispel all doubts.

    “Only sports anyone cares about on this blog are Football, and Baseball”

    Not true………………..

  • thats who

    Amat On Looker said:

    El Ojo, who is Medina? Why is he in your projected line-up at SS? What happended to R. Ruiz or D. Davis or B. Castenada? How does this guy arrive at Amat and crack the “potential” line-up? Is he that good? Who is he and where did he come from?

    Andrew Medina came from Arizona and he lives in the Ruiz house. He cracks the line up because RR dad wants him there. BUT that’s how AMAT faithfuls are–they will let an outsider come in, take their kids spot yet STILL swear AMAT is the second coming.

  • Amat On Looker

    Wow! Sorry I asked. Be careful that the chip on your shoulder doesn’t fall off and take out a small village. Talk about repressed anger!

  • tops

    Top 5 Teams in SGV

    1. Dbar
    2. Damien
    3. Bonita
    4. South Hills
    5. Amat

    Dbar will win a CIF title

  • SH

    diamond bar will not win a CIF title! too many weak kids parents are humping shibleys leg. shibleys an idiot to boot!

  • Wilsonland

    Word out of wilsonland is that Steven Baltiera is going to fullerton next year? Didn’t believe it but I’m starting to hear more of it…interesting

  • 0er-0df

    Word is that McCreery (LHP) from Bonita is nursing a bad elbow, just got worse. McCreery will get a second opinion next week about the possibility of Tommy John surgery. Either way it doesnt look good!

  • In the woods

    Some clue me in, who is Coach Beck?

    What happened to the coach from last year?

  • real deal

    Saw Baltiera throw a lot this summer. The kid can flat out pitch. I also heard through the vine that he was going to CSUF. Can someone in the know please confirm. Great kid from a good family. Kid is undersized but plays like a giant. Regarding McCreery, if what is printed here is reality then Bonita could be in for a long season. Bohi, please confirm or deny.

  • C’ mon Man

    @That’s who said ….The kid is not potentially going to crack the line up for any reason but that he is regarded as one of the best Glove guys in his class. Need to do some “hw” before comments about the kids ability. Seen him play for many years. Originally would have been a Lancer as a Freshman before having to move because of his dad’s profession. His das’s co recently re aligned / re structure. The kid is from the area and grew up playing with many of the top talent in the SGV and beyond.

  • ?

    D.Bar will NOT win a CIF championship!
    Tops – you must be on the staff or board to think that craziness.

  • Pitching Master

    Coach Beck happens to be the best pitching coach in the San Gabriel Valley. He is respected by baseball people throughout the country. Many top universities trust him enough to send him their pitchers to throw for him in the Cape Cod League over the summer. This is what he has done with Amat pitchers since his arrival.

    2007
    Maverick Olivares 11-0
    Chris Eusebio 10-0

    2008
    Paul Paez 11-0
    Brady Zuniga 6-2
    Brandon McNitt 5-1

    2009
    Paul Paez 10-3
    Brady Zuniga 10-1

    2010
    Paul Paez 13-2
    Brandon McNitt 8-0
    Daniel Zamora 5-1

  • Don

    Teach,

    Thanks for the kind words. We are certainly in agreement on Saylor insofar as he is a fine ballplayer. Sadly, the only work behind the plate I have seen at a prep level was in last year’s underclass all star game. He played a swell game, but it was what it was, no more or no less. Your assertion, the BEST catcher on the West Coast and one of the Top 5 in the COUNTRY, puts him in some pretty rarefied air. With all due respect, I’ll withhold any stronger comment until he actually plays some more prep games behind the plate.

    Cody was a three year starter on a team that was 31-5 in league between 2008 and 2010, winning a ring in ’09. To suggest the team would have been better off with CJ is, to say the least, bold. I’m sure there are coaches who would make that kind of change during a run like that, but Smitty ain’t one of them. Cody was a calm leader behind the plate and handled pitchers well; he was also a 6’3, 220 lb left handed hitter with power. I think he was fairly well mentored over the years by his Pop, Uncle Bill, and some other guy I forget.

    I wish CJ all of the best and know that he will do well. Whether he lives up to the attention remains yet to be seen. I’ll be hangin’ out beyond CF when I can, I need another Huskie to follow beside Dick’s kid.

  • Amat Alumni and Parent

    I am really looking forward to this baseball season. I agree that Coach Beck is a wonderful pitching coach and I have complete confidence that the pitchers will do well. Just because they are pretty much new doesn’t mean can’t pitch. Time will tell.

  • TeachDGame

    Don – your right, I am bold because I have seen first hand in games far bigger than anything he will face at South Hills. And you can quote me on that… :) So I can support witholding on what you have not seen and can respect that. I too once had that opinion of the boy, then I saw the light. You are very correct in the coaching aspect, on pure skills, not even close. But I can not argue the results over the last few years. But, that league was a little weak the last few years, come on, you can smile…

    Also, I apologize for putting a target on certain peoples backs with my public comments. Many times the readers here make assumptions of who is who out here. If you want to know who I am there is no hiding behind fake names . Just spend 30 seconds on google and be specific, you will find exactly who I am. Can’t make it that easy for everyone.

    Anyway, definitely looking forward to this season. Feel it will be far more offense and defense driven this year. The teams that play the best defense and execute are going to dominate the valley. There are not many Plutko’s, Covey’s, Paez, others etc. who are going to take the ball and own games. Matthews is as tough as they come, DB is going to have play behind him and score some runs for sure. Amat will put up the runs most definitely. You will not be able to pitch around that line up. Some untested pitchers will need to step up and just pitch effectively, don’t need to dominate, just throw strikes and let the defense execute behind them. Truly hope reports on big lefty from Bonita are not true. Good kid, have known for years. Bonita needs him on the hill, but I’m sure they will also have other pitchers who will throw effective innings. Their offense will execute with good coaching for sure.

    Definitely will be a great season of baseball in the valley. Can not judge who is top dog on a one game head to head this year, no way. Let’s get the ball flying.

  • Husky4Life

    Where Did Cody Doyle go to school? Heard one of the coaches was trying to get him into a D-1 school?

  • Tartan Pride

    Huskey4Life…I was just looking at college rosters the other day and came across Cody’s name on the University of New Mexico’s team. Good luck to you and the SH Huskies this season.

  • Ro

    sophmore Dj Daniels is also a great baseball player at Amat.just seeing that he is not mentioned on the varsity team shows me how good the team is.

  • anonymous

    Ro – I have never seen the kid play but it’s probably just a case of “not enough room,” for young Mr. Daniels. You’re right about one thing though, the team is good, they’re looking real good at this point. I have been very impressed with Amat’s pitching to date. The team looks to be a legitimate contender again this year.

  • Hitter

    Who is going to hit for the guys playing second and short?

  • incoming frosh

    future looking good for Amat baseball. 2 of the top valley 8th graders are reportedly trying to get into Amat. Jason Juarez considered one of the best 13 yr old pitchers and Sergio Robles a great batter who plays on the Tomateros which is considered a top program in the U.S.A . goodluck to both kids

  • Amat Fan # 1

    That’s great news! Always great to hear about good young athletes coming into the program. The Amat Varsity team looks damn good this year and our JV and “Frosh/Soph” teams are pretty good too! Amat baseball is lookin good now and for the future. Go Lancers!