First published in the May 7 print issue of the Burbank Leader.
The Burbank High School varsity baseball team was eliminated from the CIF-SS Division IV postseason after being shut out by visiting California High of Whittier, 4-0, in a wildcard game on Tuesday.
The Bulldogs finished the season third in the Pacific League standings with a 10-4 record (15-9 overall).
Jimmy Cafferty, who collected a base hit at the plate, took the loss after allowing three earned runs on three hits and four walks with seven strikeouts over 4.1 innings on the mound. Josh DiPietro took over in relief, allowing one unearned run on one hit with a strikeout across 2.2 innings.
Catcher Jared Cantu tallied a base hit, second baseman Wyatt Lamarsna swiped a pair of bases and walked once, and left fielder Jose Avellaneda, shortstop Danny Betancourt and right fielder Dylan Robinson each walked once.
Burbank was edged in its regular-season finale at intracity rival Burroughs High, 2-1, last Friday. Avellaneda produced a base hit and an RBI, Lamarsna scored once and Joe Maslyk stole a base. Starting pitcher Daniel Neria allowed two runs (one earned) on five hits with seven strikeouts across four innings, while Cafferty allowed a pair of hits with four strikeouts over two innings of relief while tossing 19 of his 25 pitches for strikes.
Cantu had a fine season as he led the team in batting average (.311), home runs (one), runs batted in (14) and finished second with 11 stolen bases (minimum 15 games played). Lamarsna paced the team in on-base percentage (.434), OPS (.904), slugging percentage (.471), doubles (nine), runs scored (20), stolen bases (17) and tied the team lead in triples (one). Avellaneda posted a .283/.353/.350 batting line and a .703 OPS with 10 RBIs, eight runs scored and six stolen bases. He also did a fine job as a closer, racking up a pair of saves in two opportunities and a win across 13.2 innings while adding 20 strikeouts. Betancourt tallied a .273 batting average, .403 on-base percentage and .712 OPS with 11 RBIs and eight runs scored. DiPietro led the team in innings pitched (53) and WHIP (0.96) while finishing second in ERA (1.18), third in strikeouts (45) and tied with Cafferty for the team lead in wins (five). Cafferty tossed 37.1 innings while leading the team in strikeouts (64) and ERA (0.94). Neria pitched 40 innings and posted a 4-2 record with 54 strikeouts, a 1.92 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP.
The Bears edged visiting Burbank, 2-1, in a Pacific League finale matchup last Friday. Junior Nick Forrest picked up the win after tossing a dominant complete game, allowing just one hit, one earned run and a pair of walks with 14 strikeouts.
Sophomore Nathaniel Chapman finished 2-for-3 with a double and a run scored, junior Sebastian Zamora registered a double and a pair of RBIs, and senior Andrew Chapman tallied a base hit and a run scored. Senior Bailey Ewan, junior Jarell Bijasa and sophomore Mason Mahay each collected a base hit.
Burroughs, which finished the regular season second in the standings with an 11-3 record (17-10 overall), opened its CIF-SS Division V postseason bid by hosting Village Christian High of Sun Valley in a first-round contest yesterday; the result was unavailable by the Burbank Leader’s press deadline and will be included in next week’s issue. If victorious, the Bears would advance to the second round and meet either Orange (17-10-1 overall) or Loara High of Anaheim (11-9 overall) on Tuesday, May 10, at 3:15 p.m.