With the second half of the high school baseball season upon us in Orange County, I have come upon some certainties. I know for certain Mater Dei is the best team in the area. I know for certain that Chasen Ford and Ryan Kayoda give El Toro the best 1-2 punch on the mound. I know for certain the Sea View is as whacky a league as there is to predict.
Outside of those three things, I'm not certain what to make of the season so far. Some teams are playing better than expected and others not meeting expectations. The quest to a league title begins in earnest this week.
Below is my OC Top 10.
1. Mater Dei - Trinity League - Won the inaugural Boras Classic SoCal bracket a week after winning the National High School Invitational.
2. Fountain Valley - Sunset League - Went 5-0 in the Lions Tournament and beat Capo Valley for 3rd place. Championship game participants are determined based on record then fewest runs allowed.
3. El Toro - South Coast League - See above. Kayoda went pitch-for-pitch with Philip Bickford in the Boras Classic. One scout told me it was the two best pitching performances he'd seen this year.
4. Canyon - Century League - After an opening round loss to Lakewood in the Boras Classic, the Comanches went 3-0. Cameron Baraneck is having a big year at the plate.
5. Orange Lutheran - Trinity League - The Lancers appear to be putting things together after winning the National Classic. Jason Martin and Matt Stumme have shown flashes of brilliance in the lineup.
6. San Clemente - Sea View League - The Tritons went 5-0 in the Lions Tournament and hold a head-to-head win over Aliso Niguel despite their identical 3-1 records in league.
7. Mission Viejo - South Coast League - The Diablos were an impressive 4-0-1 in the Lions Tournament. The tie coming against Campolindo who Baseball America had rated as high as third.
8. Cypress - Empire League - The Centurions were supposed to be head-and-shoulders better than anyone in league. While undefeated in league play they've shown chinks in the armor out of it.
9. El Dorado - Century League - The Golden Hawks lone loss last week was to Cypress in the National Classic. With only one game left v Canyon, El Dorado needs help in title chase.
10. Beckman - Pacfic Coast Leage - The Patriots have had five and six game winning streaks. They've won three since losing last week to Laguna Hills.
Villa Park, JSerra, Trabuco Hills, Laguna Hills, Aliso Niguel, Capo Valley