California Warriors Pro Alumni Update: Lucas Erceg

The Milwaukee Brewers gave California Warriors alum Lucas Erceg a shot to prove himself this spring, bringing him along to big-league camp as a non-roster invitee. True to form, Erceg is off to a blistering start, turning heads with stellar performances one after the other and solidifying his spot as the 7th ranked prospect in the Brewers system.

Lucas showed he can swing it in clutch situations during a matchup against the Cincinnati Reds, when he stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the 9th with the scored tied 2-2 and knocked a walkoff Single into right field. A few games later, Erceg really made his presence felt when the Brewers leveled Cleveland by a score of 14-4; Lucas accounted for 5 of those Runs, when he launched a 6th Inning Grand Slam onto the roof in right field and followed that up with a solo shot in the 8th.

Over 20 AB this spring, Erceg is batting a scorching-hot .450/.500/.1300 with 5 Runs, 7 RBI, and 2 HR. We’re looking forward watching Lucas’ career unfold, and wish him the best of luck!

California Warriors Alumni Player of the Week: Nick Roth

Drake HS Senior and California Warriors alum, Nick Roth, had a monster day for the Pirates in their matchup against the Marin Catholic Wildcats. Hitting out of the cleanup spot, Roth also was Drake’s starting pitcher, leading his team to a 4-1 victory over MC on both sides of the ball.

On the mound, Nick dominated the Wildcats lineup, tossing a complete game in which he struck out 11 batters while giving up only 1 BB and 1 Run. Not to be overshadowed by his own pitching performance, Roth had a day at the plate too, going 4 for 4 with a Run scored.

Roth’s performance against MC is an indication of how well his season has gone thus far. On the hill, he is 3-0 over 17 IP with a stellar 1.06 ERA and 24 K’s, holding opposing batters to a meager .136 AVG. At the dish, he is hitting .471 over 17 AB’s with 4 Runs, 6 RBI, a Double and a Triple. Congratulations to Nick, and good luck the rest of the season!

California Warriors Pro Alumni Update: O’Koyea Dickson

Coming off a dominant 2016 season playing for the Los Angeles Dodgers AAA affiliate Oklahoma City Dodgers, California Warriors Alum O’Koyea Dickson has once again been invited to the Los Angeles Dodgers Spring Training as a non-roster invitee. Dickson roped a Single and scored a Run in his first appearance of the spring against the Brewers, and continued his trend of lighting up pitchers with a 2-Run Home Run against the Rockies two days later.

O’Koyea – now 2 for 5 on the spring with 3 Runs, 2 RBI, and 1 HR – is knocking on the big league door after racking up a .328/.398/.596 triple-slash over 329 AB’s last season to go along with 63 Runs, 64 RBI, and 18 HR. The long-time California Warriors player and coach has little left to prove at the AAA level, we’re excited to see what’s next for the California Warriors Alum slugger!

Black History Month – Dusty Baker

From his playing days as a star outfielder for the Braves, Dodgers, Giants, and A’s to his time as the manger of the Giants, Cubs, Reds, and Nationals, Dusty Baker’s career spans over 40 years of service time in the big leagues. It all began when he was drafted by the Atlanta Braves out of high school in 1967, making his MLB debut one year later in 1968 (incidentally in that season, he was on deck when Hank Aaron hit the home run that moved him past Babe Ruth on the all-time list). From that early debut at age 19, he went on to collect some serious accolades – he was a 2x All-Star, World Series Champion, Gold Glove Winner, and 2x Silver Slugger, finishing his career with a .278 AVG, 242 HR, and 1013 RBI.

Still an active manager with the Washington Nationals, Dusty ranks 16th all-time in Wins by a manager with a career record of 1766-1571, and will look to jump up that list a couple spaces this season. Over his storied career as a manager, he has also gathered a long list of accolades for himself – he won the NL Manager of the Year 3 times, managed the 2003 NL All Star Team, won 103 games with the Giants in 1993, and has appeared in 7 playoffs and in 1 World Series as a manager.

“I don’t know why I do stuff sometimes. Sometimes I go by the numbers. Sometimes I go on what I feel. Sometimes I go on what I hope.”

Dusty Baker

In addition to Baker’s extensive production on the field and in the dugout, he is also on the board of the Positive Coaching Alliance, a national non-profit organization with the mission to transform the culture of youth sports so that youth athletes can have a positive, character-building experience, and is the godfather of First Base Foundation & California Warriors Founder, Noah Jackson.

California Warriors Alumni Player of the Week: Max Gamboa

Facing off against a tough Texas A&M (ranked #20) lineup, California Warriors alum Max Gamboa brought his A-game to deliver a Win for the Pepperdine Waves. The Junior RHP from Tam High tossed 6.2 Innings of 1-Run ball during which he collected 10 K’s and only allowed 2 BB’s and 5 Hits.

The Win was Gamboa’s first of the season, and the appearance leaves him with an impressive 14/3 K/BB ratio over 10.2 IP. His strong showing against the formidable opponent, Texas A&M, is a sign of good things to come for the California Warriors alum, and we look forward to watching the rest of his season unfold!

California Warriors Alumni Player of the Week: Dominic Burke

Dominic Burke, a long-time California Warrior and current College of Marin Mariner, takes home this week’s California Warriors Alumni Player of the Week Award with a solid performance in three games against Diablo Valley, Hartnell, and Folsom Lake.

Over the week, the Freshman out of San Marin HS went 4-14 with 2 Runs scored, 1 RBI, a Double, a Walk, and a Stolen Base. The highlight of the week for Burke came in the top of the 11th inning against the Diablo Valley Vikings – with the score tied at 4, Dominic led off the inning with a Double, eventually scoring the go-ahead and game-winning run on a base knock by fellow California Warriors Alum, Marcus Chiu.

Burke has been doing well for himself and for his team this season as the leadoff hitter and starting third baseman – he has put together a .350/.458/.400 triple slash so far over 40 AB’s, and leads the team with 3 SB as well. Congratulations to Dominic, and best of luck on the rest of your season!

Black History Month – Dave Stewart

Known for his prolific career on the mound where he won three championships, tossed a nasty forkball, and intimidated countless batters with his infamous death stare, Dave Stewart is an all-around baseball guy whose career in the sport has flourished far past his days of toeing the rubber.

A native of Oakland, California, Stewart turned down a stack of college scholarships to play football in favor of joining the Los Angeles Dodgers farm system, who selected him in the 16th round of the 1975 MLB Draft. He eventually made his debut with the Dodgers in 1978, marking the start of a playing career that would last until 1995. Over that span, Stewart collected a hefty bunch of accolades, including 3 World Series Championships, a World Series MVP, Roberto Clemente Award, a no-hitter, and 4 seasons in a row with the Oakland Athletics in which he won 20 games.

During his years as a player, Stewart took the field for the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Texas Rangers, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Oakland Athletics (two stints), and the Toronto Blue Jays, and amassed a 168-129 record to go along with a whopping 1741 K’s. While many would be content to call it a day after racking up numbers like that, Stewart has continued to thrive on the business end of the baseball world – in addition to his years spent as a pitching coach for various MLB teams, Stewart started a sports agency that brokered high-profile deals with players like Matt Kemp and Eric Chavez, while also serving as an assistant GM in several organizations before eventually claiming the GM job with the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2014-2016.

Black History Month – Reggie Jackson

A lot of great players have made a mark in MLB over their careers, but there is only one who so regularly provided postseason heroics that he earned the nickname “Mr. October” – Reggie Jackson. Over his 21-year career, Reggie played in 17 playoff series – including 5 World Series appearances – putting together an impressive career postseason stat line: .278 AVG, .885 OPS, 48 RBI, 41 Runs, and 18 HR.

A true all-around athlete, Jackson starred on his high school track, baseball, basketball, and football teams, at one point suffering 5 broken vertebrae during the final football game of his junior year. Doctors told him he may never walk again, but he worked his way back onto the field, eventually opting to attend Arizona State University on a football scholarship (he switched to baseball after one season).

“When you’ve played this game for ten years and gone to bat seven-thousand times and gotten two-thousand hits do you know what that really means? It means you’ve gone zero for five-thousand.”

Reggie Jackson

Reggie’s prolific college career wrapped up nicely when he was selected #2 overall in the 1966 MLB Draft by the Kansas City (soon-to-be Oakland) Athletics, the team he was with for 9 seasons before stints with the Baltimore Orioles, New York Yankees, California Angels, and eventually again the Oakland Athletics. His postseason numbers are what he is known for, but his regular season career accolades mark him as one of the true greats to have played the game. With a .262/.356/.490 triple-slash over 11418 Plate Appearances, Jackson was good for 2584 Hits, 1551 Runs, 1702 RBI, and 563 HR. He also was a 14-time All Star, a 5-time World Series Champion, a 1-time AL MVP, and a 2-time World Series MVP, honors he collected on his way to becoming a 1st-ballot Hall of Famer and having his number retired both in Oakland (#9) and New York (#44).

California Warriors Alumni Player of the Week: Alex Fernandez

Congratulations to this week’s California Warriors Alumni Player of the Week winner, Alex Fernandez! The Junior at Academy of Art University threw 5.1 Innings this week in a relief appearance against the SF State Gators, picking up Academy of Arts’ starting pitcher to keep his team in the game.

Over his 5.1 IP, Fernandez struck out 4 and gave up only 1 ER, giving the Urban Knights a chance to come back against a Gators offense that got on the board early. Alex came away from the game with a no-decision, as Academy of Art would eventually fall in the 13th Inning to a final score of 8-5.

A native of Napa, CA, Fernandez played for the California Warriors between 2010 and 2014 and attended Napa Valley College before transferring to the D-II Academy of Art University.

Black History Month – Rickey Henderson

Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson – nicknamed “The Man of Steal” – famously summed up the mentality that helped make him one of the greatest to ever play the game of baseball when he said, “If my uniform doesn’t get dirty, I haven’t done anything in the baseball game.” A blur on the basepaths, Rickey’s legendary speed, hustle, and raw athleticism carried him through a prolific 25-year career in MLB during which he made his mark all over the record books.

Born in Chicago, Rickey grew up in Oakland, CA and attended Oakland Tech as a 3-sport athlete, starring on the baseball, basketball, and football teams – he was an All-American running back who turned down numerous college scholarships in favor of playing Minor League Baseball. Henderson quickly worked climbed the ladder in the minors, dominating at every level until he reached the bigs and made his debut with the Oakland Athletics, the team that would make him a hometown hero.

“When I was a little-leaguer, I was sort of famous for stealing bases – and it started only because my mom wanted to be sure where I was in the afternoons. Mom always used to say, “If you don’t come home dirty, you didn’t play a baseball game.” So I always tried to get in a situation where I had to slide so that I could go home dirty.”

Rickey Henderson

Over his career, Rickey played with 9 different teams (including 4 stints with the Oakland A’s), and compiled some truly staggering stats. He stepped up to the plate 13,346 times, amassing 3,055 Hits, 2,295 Runs (MLB record), 1,406 Stolen Bases (MLB record), and 81 leadoff Home Runs (MLB record) while slashing .279/.401/.419. Henderson is also the single-season leader for steals, breaking Hall of Famer Lou Brock’s record of 188 SB in 1982 by swiping 130 bases.

The contributions from the greatest leadoff hitter of all time were recently immortalized further by the Oakland Athletics, who retired his #24 in 2009, when they announced that the team would be naming the playing surface at the Coliseum after him, the “Rickey Henderson Field.”