Spring Sports Preview – Baseball!

March 4, 2009 by  

BURBANK — The spring season is typically the most hectic time for high school sports.

Locally, 28 teams in seven sports from Burbank, Burroughs, Bellarmine-Jefferson and Providence highs will take to the fields, courts, courses, tracks and pools in search of league titles and postseason success.Only Burroughs (third place in the Pacific League) and Bell-Jeff (third in the Santa Fe League) were able to make it to the playoffs last season, and both were defeated in the first round.

BASEBALL

The Guards qualified for CIF for the sixth straight season, something no other local team can claim.

Bell-Jeff had two players who earned All-CIF honors last season and the Indians had one.

For Bell-Jeff (9-12), Jairo Trujillo, a senior infielder/pitcher, earned first-team accolades in Division VI and teammate Philip Diaz, a sophomore shortstop, made the second team. They should both lead the team again this season

Burroughs’ Raymond Palafox, a senior shortstop, received a second-team nod in Division II.

Last season, Palafox paced the squad with a .447 batting average. In addition, he had 38 hits, 28 runs batted in, 30 runs scored, seven doubles and four home runs for the Indians (15-12).

Trujillo was named the Santa Fe League Player of the Year. It marked the fourth straight season a Guard player earned the honor. Along with hitting .571 with 32 hits, Trujillo also scored 32 runs, had 23 runs batted in, two home runs and a .786 slugging percentage. He also stole 21 bases in 22 attempts.

Diaz, who earned first-team all-league honors, led Bell-Jeff with a .591 batting average. Along with scoring 40 runs, he had 39 hits, seven doubles and two triples. He also stole 23 bases in 24 attempts.

Burbank (12-15; fifth in the Pacific League) should get a boost from Crescenta Valley junior transfer Lonnie Kauppila. Last season, the Falcons’ third baseman and No. 3 hitter hit .348, scored 20 runs and knocked in 22.
Providence (8-11) in trying to bounce back from a season in which it placed fourth in the Liberty League.

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Jeff Tully – Burbank Leader 

Photo – Diana Pinedo

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