Few things are more challenging in sports than to repeat as champion.
That’s the case for Reed Peters and the Delta baseball team, which goes into this season with a target on its back, trying to maintain the same hunger that led to last year’s title run.
The Big 8 conference is loaded with a handful of top 20 teams, making the path to back-to-back titles a difficult one, but Peters remains confident in his team.
“The good thing that we have is there’s a lot of competition amongst our players, in terms of the backup guy is almost equally as good as the front line guy, so everybody is pushing each other and the front line guys know that if they’re not getting the job done there is somebody behind them that will,” said Peters.
The Mustangs come into the season returning 13 starters from the team that captured the state title, including pitchers Bobby Ramos and Mark Scott.
Scott’s record currently stands at 2-0, while Ramos fell to 2-1 after losing the first of a three game set to Cabrillo College 3-2, despite striking out 6 batters.
According to Ramos, his hot start can be attributed to the team as a whole having hit the ground running and producing across the board.
“Everyone did their job. The closers came in and did their job when I was pitching and basically tore it up. The guys are hitting the ball, putting it in play and getting runs scored and doing a good job so far,” said Ramos.
Delta is third in the conference in runs scored and has a collective earned run average of 2.86.
Offensively, sophomore third baseman Stephen Patterson has lead the charge for the Mustangs with a batting average of 5.71 and 11 runs batted in.
The Mustangs’ record stands at 4-2, with a 14-2 loss at 19th ranked West Valley College out of Saratoga being the major blemish on an otherwise strong season start.
The loss did provide a reminder for the Mustangs that no games will be easy this year.
“West Valley is a good team, and when you don’t show up ready to play, anybody can beat you,” said Peters.