Turlock athletes will be well represented at the annual Stanislaus County All Star baseball game today at John Thurman Field in Modesto.
Turlock will be sending three players in outfielders Nick Benson and Alex Pallios, along with pitcher and infielder Blake Cederlind who were all part of Turlock’s great year in which they captured—yet another—Central California Conference title.
Pitman, which failed to make the postseason in 2014 after earning an 8-7 CCC league record, will be sending four players in Dakota Spillers, Coleton Horner, Armando Moreno and Trevor Chaney.
For only the second time since the event started back in 1990, Turlock head coach Mark de la Motte will be coaching the West team along with three of his players in a fundraising event sponsored by the Modesto Sunrise Rotary.
“It’s a good opportunity for top juniors and seniors to play in front of a big crowd. More of a game for fun,” said de la Motte.
Bulldogs Benson and Pallios were part of the All-League team, while Cederlind was named the CCC’s Pitcher of the Year in his senior season.
In a Bulldogs team where 10 pitchers were used throughout the season, Cederlind finished the year with 51 and 1/3 innings pitched, an 8-1 record and a 1.50 ERA in that span.
Cederlind’s .289 average from the plate was fifth best on the team behind only Benson, Pallios, Austin Bush and Brett Cumberland—all of whom were part of the All-League team.
Bush and Cumberland are not part of the team this year because they are already competing in a summer league for collegiate players.
Benson was outstanding on the outfield for the Bulldogs in 2014, along with many great offensive performances. He finished the year with a .304 average after starting and playing in all 30 games for the ‘Dogs and was second on the team in RBI with 24.
Pallios’ year did not go unnoticed, the junior, who really stepped it up this year for the Bulldogs, has solidified himself as one of the key contributors with a .355 average in 29 games played and was third on the team with 27 hits in 76 at-bats.
“They all did a great job to get here. Pitman and our guys [Turlock High], they are all very solid and will represent Turlock very well. Both teams only had one practice on Wednesday since many of the guys play for different teams,” said de la Motte.
Spillers and Horner were part of CCC All-League team after leading the way for a Pitman Pride team that barely missed the postseason in their final game after falling to Turlock in 9-1 loss that ended their late season rally.
Horner was arguably the most consistent player of both Turlock schools after getting a hit in every single game, which led to a 26-game hitting streak along with a batting average of .468 in those 26 contests that included 20 RBI and an on-base percentage of .531 in 79 at-bats.
Spillers was not far off as he led the team in RBI with 23 and finished the year hitting .413 in all 26 games. Spillers also managed to get at least a hit in 21 of 26 games and finished with two nine-game hitting streaks.
Chaney was banged up for the beginning of the season and was out for over six weeks in his senior season, but when he was up at the plate he got the hits for the Pride as he finished with an average of .444 in the 10 games he participated in.
Moreno played in 23 games for the Pride as he finished the year hitting .305, which included a six-game hitting streak in the first month of the season. He finished with 15 runs scored behind an offense that took third in the CCC in runs with 83.
The big game will be played at 7 p.m. today at John Thurman Field in Modesto.
“...if we win or lose doesn’t matter, it’s the fun part to play with other top guys in the area,” de la Motte added.