Southern California's High School Sports Blog

Baseball: Rosales, Birmingham Win LA City D1 Championship (6/3/17)

Seventh-seeded Birmingham upset top-seeded Chatsworth to win the LA City Section championship at Dodger Stadium. Photo/Jon Lofdahl

Top-seeded Chatsworth has made several trips to the CIF-Los Angeles City Section Finals, but hasn’t won the title since 2009. Because of some stellar pitching from Birmingham of Lake Balboa, nothing changed.

Eddie Rosales went 2 for 4 with a triple and an RBI single in the sixth inning, and threw four innings of two-hit relief, to lead Birmingham to a nail-biting 4-3 victory over Chatsworth to win the CIF-LA City Section Division 1 title on Saturday afternoon at Dodger Stadium.

Johnny Tincher went 2 for 4 with an RBI double in the sixth inning that scored Caleb Reyes. Rosales came up next to bat and knocked in Victor Villa to make it 4-1. The two insurance runs were needed.

Eddie Rosales pitched four innings of two-hit relief, and had the decisive RBI in Birmingham’s 4-3 upset of top-seeded Chatsworth in the LA City finals. Photo/Jon Lofdahl

That’s because Chatsworth wasn’t going to go down without a fight. Pinch-hitter Mackenzie Lomas and Brandon Bohning led off the bottom of the seventh inning with back-to-back walks for Chatsworth. With two out and both runners on base, Josh Medina doubled to the left-center field wall that scored Lomas and Bohning. With the tying run at second and the winning run at bat, Alex Milone hit a fly ball to center field.

The victory gave Birmingham (26-9-1) its first title since 2014. The Patriots were ranked No. 10 in Los Angeles by So Cal Sidelines. Chatsworth (29-6) were ranked No. 2 in LA and No. 3 in So Cal.

“When you play a championship game, you kind of expect a dogfight like we just had there,” Birmingham coach Matt Mowry said. “Especially against Chatsworth. They’re an unbelievable program with a great team this year. We were better today. It was awesome.”

After Kevin Olmos’ sacrifice fly ball to left field in the first inning gave Birmingham a 1-0 lead, Chatsworth evened the score in the third inning on a double to center field by Daniel Zakosek that scored Bohning.

Chatsworth had a great opportunity to do some damage in the fourth inning. Milone walked and Gabe Gonzalez singled. Zach Kaminkow was hit by the pitch, which loaded the bases. But Rosales and the Patriots got out of the jam as Miguel Marin grounded into a 1-2-3 double play. Randy Mata grounded to shortstop to end the inning.

“We had a chance with the bases loaded and nobody out,” Chatsworth coach Tom Meusborn said. “That was kind of a huge situation, we came up empty and they got the lead on us. We didn’t get the big hit when we needed it.”

Rosales knew he had put himself in a tough situation in the bottom of the seventh with the two leadoff walks and the two-run double, but he let his defense finish the job.

“It got a little nerve wracking,” Rosales said with a smile. “I just had to make sure I executed my pitch. I just had to put the ball in play and our center fielder was there to make the final catch.”

Birmingham players celebrate their upset of Chatsworth for the LA City Division 1 baseball championship at Dodger Stadium. Photo/Jon Lofdahl

Zakosek went 2 for 4 with the RBI double in the third inning and Medina went 1 for 3 with a walk and a two-RBI double in the seventh while pitching 3.2 innings of relief; he took the loss for Chatsworth, which has lost three CIF-LACS title games since winning their last one eight years ago.

“We are in a situation where we have to win or it is a failure on the season,” Meusborn said. “That’s where the bar is set for us. It’s a little bit of a different situation. We have to be able to handle that in that situation. We fought hard and we did what we needed to do with the week and a half off. I thought we were ready to go. We just couldn’t get the big hits when we needed to.”

Reyes went 2 for 3 with a run scored and Matt Garcia went 1 for 3 with a walk and an RBI for Birmingham which, despite being the seventh seed in the playoffs, is the section champ.

“It feels amazing,” Rosales said. “Everyone doubted us coming into this season and saying Chatsworth was going to win it all. We came here to prove them all wrong by winning the City title.”

(NOTE: Report news and notes to So Cal Sidelines editor-in-chief/softball writer Carlos Arias via email (carlos.arias@socalsidelines.com), text (949-606-3602) or Tweet (@SoCalSidelines))

Follow us on Twitter @SoCalSidelines.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply