Baseball: Chatsworth tops City Section teams

The first four weeks of City Section baseball have been completed, and Chasworth looks like the No. 1 team. Here's a look at the teams to watch:

1. Chasworth (5-2). The Chancellors have been facing top opponents and hanging tough. Pitchers Josh Garcia and Tommy Palomera have received a lift from Danny Hernandez. Second baseman Andrew Renteria was a surprise hitting standout in the fall and has continued to deliver with shortstop Sam Shaikin.


2. Birmingham (4-3). The defending City Section champs are getting good pitching from Adrian Rodriguez, who has 22 strikeouts in 20 innings. They're gearing up for a two-game showdown to start the West Valley League on March 25 against Chatsworth. They face a good Marshall team on Tuesday.

3. Taft (9-2). The Toreadors are the biggest surprise. First baseman Jayson Newman has hit eight home runs. Junior pitcher Ryan Shreve is on his way to becoming an ace. And the Toreadors still have to unveil their No. 1 pitcher, Max Mehlbaum.

4. Roosevelt (7-1). The Rough Riders own wins over Sylmar and Kennedy. They face Cleveland on Monday. Pitching has been the key with Robert Contreras and Sergio Valenzuela.

5. Cleveland (8-3). Coach Scott Drootin and his assistant, Sid Lopez, pulled off a good one, making Alex Zepeda a sidearmer, and he has come through early on. Ben Kaser remains the ace and Sam Villa also has done well on the mound. The Cavaliers won the Southern California Invitational.

6. Kennedy (6-5). The Golden Cougars have played a competitive schedule and still have lots of pitching. Estevan Rodriguez is hitting .454 and Juan Jose Gonzalez is at .444.

7. El Camino Real (3-5). The Conquistadores are struggling with their hitting. Pitchers Jeremy Polon and Jordan Berg remain formidable.

8. Marshall (8-1-1). Freshman Joseph Padilla is 16 of 33 (.485). Johnny Vergara is 2-1 with a 1.59 ERA.

9. Narbonne (3-3). The Gauchos have been playing lots of Southern Section teams, so don't worry about the record, especially when they still have Daniel Rocha and Isaiah Flowers around.

10. San Fernando (6-2). The Tigers have a big two-game series with Sylmar this week. Kai Gomez, the coach's son, is pitching and hitting well.

Hamilton is off to an 8-1 start. Its best win was over St. Francis, 4-3.