After a summer that saw him garner attention from several colleges at showcase events, Erik Cha carried that momentum into the 2013 high school baseball season as the ace for Ayala High School (Chino Hills, Calif.) in the stout Sierra League.
Despite a couple of hard-luck losses, the southpaw finished the season with a 6-3 record and a 3.08 ERA while opponents batted only .268 against him.
"He often faced off against the best pitchers in our league," said Ayala head coach Chris Vogt. "He often held his own."
Cha won head-to-head matchups against Grant Hockin and Jonathan Olson, both UCLA commits, and lost a battle against Adrian De Horta, a Cal State Fullerton commit.
Cha carries a 3.7 GPA and takes the mental part of pitching as seriously as he does his technique.
"Erik is extremely smart on the mound," said Vogt. "He spends more time talking to our hitting coach than most hitters. He wants to know how to get guys out."
As the ace of the staff, Cha carries the weight of expectations of not only his head coach, but his teammates as well.
"I am very proud of Erik because I put an enormous amount of pressure on him," said Vogt. "I wasn't sure how he would respond; he exceeded my expectations."
Cha works with Dave Coggin of Performance Fitness for Athletes to fine tune his pitching mechanics.
"[He] is mentally so far ahead of high school pitchers at this point high school career," said Coggin. "He will be a dominant pitcher at the next level."
Below is a video shot 6/5/13 of Cha throwing a bullpen session at Ayala High School.