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Baseball: A look at 2011 in the City Section

May 30, 2010 |  9:02 am

Now that the 2010 City Section Division I champion has been decided _ Woodland Hills El Camino Real _ it's time to look ahead to 2011, and if a lesson has been learned, it's that you can't win a City title without a top No. 1 pitcher.

Chatsworth had made it to Dodger Stadium seven consecutive years, but not this season, and the reason was the Chancellors never found a No. 1 pitcher. El Camino Real had Jose Cardona, and San Pedro had Jonathan Mata.

And that's where to start predicting 2011. There are two schools that will have pitchers at another level than everyone else _ El Camino Real with Cardona and Wilmington Banning with Jonathan Hernandez.

But there are lots of other schools with pitchers who could improve and reach that level. Birmingham has Kevin Torres. Chatsworth has four pitchers _ Christian Lopez, Angel Rodriguez, Aaron Brown and Steven Karkenny. Granada Hills Kennedy has Ryan Cruz. Taft has Zach Friedman. Westchester has Robert Gsellman and Jamaal Moore. Arleta has Javy Lopez. San Fernando has David Lira.

If all these pitchers keep getting better and come close to reaching the level of Cardona and Hernandez, then the City Section will have one strong division in 2011.

But in the end, to get to Dodger Stadium, a team is going to have to beat Cardona or Hernandez. That's what the summer will be about. Developing pitchers who can win the big game.

-- Eric Sondheimer