DIAMOND NOTES: Cherry Valley product spent time on DL … Former REV-Pepperdine pitcher productive through last weekend … Cal State’s program still on the rise … Brown leaves as NCAA Division 2 All-American … Banning, Beaumont shut out in All-CIF softball honors.
Jackson McClelland had five saves in seven chances while pitching for Class A Dunedin in the Florida State League this season.
The Cherry Valley product, who played at Redlands East Valley High School before signing with the Toronto Blue Jays out of Pepperdine University, had appeared in 21 games for Dunedin as of last weekend.
McClelland, whose earned run average was 3.27, is a relief pitcher attempting to work his way up the chain in the Blue Jays’ system.
His latest save came against Tampa on July 3, getting all four hitters over 1 1/3 innings, striking out two. McClelland, whose record was 0-2, had held opponents scoreless in six of 10 relief appearances.
Over his three latest appearances, he’s pitched 3 1/3 innings of hitless relief.
While pitching for the Lansing Lugnuts and Dunedin last season, the 6-foot, 5-inch, 220-pound McClelland saved 15 out of 16 games, posting a combined 1.34 ERA.
McClelland shares the closer’s role with at least six other Dunedin pitchers.
Earlier this season, McClelland spent time on the disabled list. He signed with the Blue Jays in June 2015 after Toronto selected him in the 15th round.
At the major league level, the Blue Jays are using Tyler Clippard, Ryan Tepera and Seunghwan Oh, plus suspended pitcher Roberto Osuna in closer roles.
Cal State San Bernardino (31-20) – The Lady Coyotes played highly-ranked Chico State right down to the fire in the CCAA Tournament championship game, nearly lifting themselves into the NCAA Division 2 Western Regionals in May.
It was the first time in school history that Cal State has reached the CCAA tournament in back-to-back seasons.
Hiring Jim Maier, the Lady Coyotes’ fourth-year head coach (586-359-2, 126-86), seems to have paid off. Cal State has finished over the .500 mark in all four seasons, another school first.
Maier has blended power and speed, plus pitching, into the Lady Coyotes’ lineup.
For openers, senior power-hitting catcher Jessica Brown graduates at No. 2 on the school’s all-time HR list with 38. Nicole Fiola (1998-2001) has the record at 40.
Brown played three seasons (2016-2018).
Give Brown a four-season career at Cal State and she’d have probably owned the career HR and RBI mark, plus walks and runs.
Fiola also had the edge in RBIs, 160-140.
Brown’s 14 home runs this season came up one shy of Britney Butler’s 2012 total of 15.
Junior center fielder Morgan Ratliff owns the school record in stolen bases (81), including 28 this season. At the plate, Ratliff came to life in the latter stages of the season, hitting .454 (44-for-97) heading into CCAA Tournament play. She added some power, hitting seven HRs in that hot-hitting span.
Senior Monica Maddox, another red-hot hitter, batted .421 over a 29-game stretch (32-for-76), striking out just five times all season.
Maier got mileage from junior pitcher Amanda Ramirez (16-13, 3.04 ERA), who racked up around 200 innings in the circle. She’s top 10 at Cal State in career appearances, innings pitched, shutouts, strikeouts. This season, she allowed a shade over one walk a game, second in CCAA.
As for this year’s four-year senior class – Ashley Leffingwell, Caitlyn Olan, Briana Quintana and Maddox – the group notched 126 wins, the most by any four-year senior class.
Both San Gorgonio Pass Area teams, Banning and Beaumont, were shut out of receiving All-CIF Southern Section honors this season.
Banning, which won the Mountain Valley League championship, reached the Southern Section Division 6 semifinals.
Beaumont won its banner in the Mountain Pass League, reaching the second round of the Division 3 playoffs.
All-CIF honors are the elite selections, usually by coach vote. Most players selected are from playoff-level teams with the division champions generally claiming Player of the Year honors.
The deeper a playoff run, for instance, likely means All-CIF honors for its players.
The Lady Broncos did not snag a single All-CIF honor, but Victorville University Prep (23-3), landed senior pitcher Ana Leal-Garza, who hit .471 and logged a 1.62 earned run average.
Banning, which beat University Prep 8-4 in the second round, racked up 13 hits against Garza, including two doubles from Sarah Martin, Elayna Lamas’ triple and double, plus a 3-for-4 effort from Chelsea Torres.
Martin, incidentally, hit .634 with five HRs in 47 at-bats, striking out 74 hitters over 71 innings after returning from an injury.
Beaumont scored a Mountain Pass League championship. The Lady Cougars lost in the second round of the Division 3 playoffs. Beaumont’s Div. 3 conqueror, pitcher Crystal Amaral, landed on the first team.
Amaral shut out the Lady Cougars, 4-0.