The Times' high school boys' baseball rankings and comments by Ben Bolch:
Rk.; Team (Section, 2008 Record); Comment
1 MATER DEI
(SS-Division I, 24-7) It's scary to think how good Monarchs might be if a "BASEketball" league really existed.
2 EL TORO
(SS-Division II, 25-7) Chargers' fully intact pitching staff, led by Chad Thompson, might be best in O.C. (Angels included).
3 CAPISTRANO VALLEY (SS-Division I, 20-9) Hard-throwing pitcher Tyler Matzek and his father, Jeff, a cancer survivor, are feel-good story of the spring.
4 SIMI VALLEY
(SS-Division I, 25-8) Drew Sandler can pitch or catch for defending section champs. But Can he do stand-up worthy of his surname?
(City-Division I, 29-5) Coach Tom Meusborn needs nine victories for No. 500 and considerably more for section title.
(SS-Division IV, 26-4) Shortstop Rich Pedroza is bound for Cal State Fullerton, which probably also entails a stop in Omaha.
(SS-Division I, 24-4) Return of pitcher Matt Hobgood, The Times' player of the year in 2008, provides great starting point.
8 SHERMAN OAKS NOTRE DAME (SS-Division II, 27-4) Sidearm specialist Josh Goossen-Brown is nephew of former New York Mets utilityman Greg Goossen.
9 BISHOP AMAT
(SS-Division IV, 27-4) Seeking a blemish in pitcher Paul Paez's 11-0 record is like trying to find an imperfection on a supermodel.
10 LOS ALAMITOS
(SS-Division I, 26-4) Two-time defending Sunset League champions have "Wright" stuff with star pitcher Beau Wright.
(SS-Division I, 19-9) Pitcher/singer Cody Buckel has to decide whether he wants to become next Greg Maddux ... or Zac Efron.
12 ORANGE LUTHERAN
(SS-Division I, 24-6) Like a farm system for UC Irvine with future Anteaters Pierce Bily and Andrew Thurman.
(SS-Division IV, 27-3) Warriors' opponents tire of playing "Patriot games" that typically end in defeat.
(SS-Division I, 21-12) Coach Spud O'Neil is the Don Zimmer of high school baseball -- he just seems to go on forever.
(SS-Division I, 21-6-1) Like a true Yellowjacket, pitcher Mikel Beltran's fastballs sting.
(SS-Division I, 22-8) Youth movement is afoot on left side of infield with sophomores Christian Lopes and Quincy Quintero.
(SS-Division III, 25-5) Pitcher Eduardo Magallon, a four-year starter, will give Pirates stability if things get rocky.
(SS-Division III, 16-12) Suggested headline if outfielder Cameron Summers has a big game: Cameron crazy!
(SS-Division I, 14-15) Outfielder Eric Snyder tied Jeff Kent's school record for hits and eclipsed him in nice-guy department.
20 SOUTH HILLS
(SS-Division III, 23-6) Having won seven consecutive league titles, Huskies hope to make it a not-so-hard eight in a row.
21 REDLANDS EAST VALLEY (SS-Division II, 26-4) Budding two-sport star Tyler Shreve hopes to leave injury woes on gridiron.
(City-Division I, 25-8-1) Baseball novices wonder whether five-tool outfielder Jeremy Stearn refers to a rake, hoe, etc.
23 CORONA SANTIAGO
(SS-Division I, 16-10) Cal State Fullerton-bound pitcher Nick Hurtado could give Kevin Costner movie tips.
(SS-Division I, 17-10) Pressed about college choice, UC Irvine-bound pitcher Kyle Hooper says he wanted to be an Anteater.
25 DANA HILLS
(SS-Division I, 15-12) UCLA-bound pitcher Peter Tago is so good he could probably play for Bruins as a high school junior.