Del Rio League Daze

At the beginning of the season there was a vigorous debate as to which baseball league was the toughest in the area.

California High right fielder George Malhiot watches in disbelief as Bell Gardens beat host California, 12-8, in last Thursday’s CIF-SS Division 3 first-round playoff game. (Staff Photo by Keith Birmingham)

While I will refrain from giving my opinion until the end of the season, it looks like the Del Rio League has disappointed for a second straight year.

In fact, while bloggers from other leagues (Almont, Del Rey, etc.) took shots at the DRL last year, it can be argued this year was even more of a downer.

Last season, the league was 2-3 in the postseason and advanced one team out of the first round of the playoffs.

This year, the league was 1-4 and failed to survive past the first round.

In fact, the Del Rio League was the only league in Division 3 that didn’t advance past the first round and the only league in the division that’s league champion, California, didn’t win its first-round game.

It was only two years ago that the league had two teams advance to the quarters. Remember that La Serna upset of Crespi? It seems like a decade ago now.

So, what’s happened the last two years? Is this a trend or just a two-year trough?

One DRL coach said the league deserved its “lower billing” because “it hasn’t proven itself to be a contender.”

Another coach said “someone in the league is going to have to make a deep run if the league’s ever going to get respect.”

So, now I pose the question to you bloggers. What is the Del Rio League (as a whole) going to have to do to be more competitive, especially in the postseason?

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  • Anonymous

    Conceited players. People build them up, hype them up, tell them they are the best league only to put tremendous pressure to produce. Tell them like it is. They stink. They are rec ball at best. These kids need to join travel ball teams at an early age. Just like ST. Paul and Amat. I bet the Camino Real league will be better next year than this sorry league.

  • Curious Almont Fan

    I know this is off the topic, but is there any way that you can update us on the coaching situation at Montebello and Warren? Apparently there was a max exodus at Montebello High School and almost every coach left for Warren. Is that true? Also, Los Altos apparently is involved as well because Los Altos’ DC left for Warren as well.

    Football is in the air and these are interesting stories. Thanks for all of your hard work Campa!!1!

  • What?

    The Del Rio has several players that are playing and well at the next level. The problem is there are not enough of them. Because your team doesn’t advance doesn’t mean that you don’t have a few quality college players.
    St. Paul and Amat recruit! They didn’t grow Encinas and Wilson, they adopted them. Those are the only 2 Division 1 players on that team. Teams need to be built and developed. Maybe that is what needs to happen to get better.

  • Anonymous

    First of all I have to comment on the Anonymous’ comment…you need a major chill pill. If DRL players stink so bad why is it that St.Paul’s coaches try to recruit from the DRL? So apparently, there is talent in the DRL. So I hope that there aren’t any DRL players reading Anonymous’ blog because you don’t stink. You can’t win them all. I hope next year is a different story.

  • Anonymous

    I dont think drl players read these blogs. They are too busy playing marbles or tag. They certainly aren’t playing baseball.

    As for Ama, They dont need to recruit. Great players want to play there.

    I doubt DRL can keep up with Montebello or Shurr. you should do as St. Paul does. Play tough teams out of league. LOSERS!

  • Cal Parent

    It is too bad that our shortstop and second baseman chose the business academy’s trip to the east coast over staying with the rest of their dedicated teammates and coaches.

    This may have been Cal’s year to win a couple playoff games. But the chances of a broken team winning in the playoffs against a good team is slim. We lost two hitters hitting over 380.

    No excuses. I just cannot believe the players and parents would let down the 20 or so players and coaches. I am definitely biased to baseball and baseball might come back and bite them in the butt if they try to play at the next level.

    Did they surprise the coach with the news or did the coach know ahead of time?

  • high school sports fan

    to anonymous- travel ball is way overrated-kids do not have to start playing travel ball at a young age-there are a number of good little leagues and pony leagues to develop players skills- these youth leagues have provided the high schools witrh very talented players- as for the DRL- it stinks in every sport- what else is new? weak league with weak coaching.

  • HER&HIM

    All these leagues have quality players. You get to high school and you are weeded out if you don’t have what it takes. There is something to the playing tougher teams before league, though. That’s got to help. Maybe team dynamics get out of whack as well, so you hit a two-year slump. Then the new up and comers influence the dugout and you’re competitive again.

  • HER&HIM

    All these leagues have quality players. You get to high school and you are weeded out if you don’t have what it takes. There is something to the playing tougher teams before league, though. That’s got to help. Maybe team dynamics get out of whack as well, so you hit a two-year slump. Then the new up and comers influence the dugout and you’re competitive again.

  • HER&HIM

    All these leagues have quality players. You get to high school and you are weeded out if you don’t have what it takes. There is something to the playing tougher teams before league, though. That’s got to help. Maybe team dynamics get out of whack as well, so you hit a two-year slump. Then the new up and comers influence the dugout and you’re competitive again.

  • sports fan original

    high school sports fan: You are not recognizing Cal-Hi football program. They have went deep into the playoffs two of the past three seasons. Yes it is easier to go deep in football than it is in baseball because football playoffs are divided into 16 team tournaments whereas baseball playoffs are divided into 32 team tournaments.

    Cal baseball has also had some success in the playoffs a few years back..La Serna also!

  • Cal Parent

    The Del Rio League puts out some fine baseball players. Victor Soto went 10 and 5 on a California final four playoff team. Ben Burke had a fine year at Santa Ana. Mitch LeVier was AWESOME at Fullerton JC befor signing. There are others. As a matter of fact is Hurley (Rio Hondo) an ex La Serna player and Fuentes (Rio Hondo) an ex Santa Fe player?

    The teams in the Almont (Schurr and Montebello) are not better than the best teams in the Del Rio. When is the last time Schurr or Montebello won a CIF baseball game? Even Alhambra, who is always rated number 1 or 2 going into the playoffs, always loses in the first couple of rounds. The reason they are always rated number 1 or 2 is because they run through that Almont League with 14 wins; say 14 and 1.

    They lost in the second round this year as the number 2 seed. And Bell Gardens (17 and 3 going in) also lost in the second round.

    Well Cal and La Serna have gone further than that two or three time in the last five years.

  • Anonymous

    from what i remember bell gardens and montebello got smashed on by santa fe!

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