California World Series Alumni 2012

Barry Zito of the Giants is shown as a high school player in the annual Area Code Games representing San Diego. Delmon Young (right) winds up to throw a pitch during 2002 CIF Southern Section championship.

There’s much being made of the nine Venezuelans in this year’s Fall Classic, but there are still more players from the Giants and Tigers from California. It’s not football, but we have compiled this feature list for many years and here it is again.

California once again leads the world in the World Series with more players from the Golden State on the rosters of the San Francisco Giants and Detroit Tigers than from any other country or state.

Of the 10 from California in the series, six play on the active 25-man roster of Tigers with four from the Giants.

After California, the countries of Venezuela and the Dominican Republic both check in with nine players.

The number from Venezuela is its most ever and to say its players are prominent would be an understatement. The Venezuelan contingent is led by American League triple crown winner Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers and includes National League Championship Series MVP Marco Scutaro and third baseman Pablo Sandoval – he of the historic three-homer explosion in Game 1 – both of the Giants.

This year’s California World Series Alumni list follows:

Detroit Tigers
Quentin Berry (Morse, San Diego) Outfielder
Phil Coke (Sonora) Pitcher
Doug Fister (Golden Valley, Merced) Pitcher
Gerald Laird (La Quinta, Westminster) Catcher
Danny Worth (Valencia) Infielder
Delmon Young (Camarillo) Outfield/Designated Hitter

San Francisco Giants
Brandon Crawford (Foothill, Pleasanton) Infielder
Xavier Nady (Salinas) Outfielder
Sergio Romo (Brawley) Pitcher
Barry Zito (University, San Diego) Pitcher

Alumni Notes
Delmon Young, who was MVP of the ALCS, had the most dominating prep career of the 10 Californians. He was the 2002 Cal-Hi Sports Mr. Baseball State Player of the Year as a junior after leading Camarillo to the CIF Southern Section Division I title.

Many of us at Cal-Hi Sports also remember seeing Delmon light up the Area Code Games as a 14-year-old two years previously. He hit 17 homers in that junior season (he also pitched) and ended his career with 35, both totals that have firmly placed his name in the state record book.

That Delmon would be so outstanding in high school was not a surprise. His older brother, Dmitri, was the 1991 Mr. Baseball State Player of the Year from Rio Mesa of Oxnard.

Gerald Laird of the Tigers also has several listings in the state record book. He once had the state career record for hits (210) and doubles (54). Both totals are still in the top five on the all-time state list.

One year ago, Laird played in the World Series for the Texas Rangers against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Since the World Series goes back more than 100 years, it’s unknown which year included the most California alums. We’ve done research on this since 1990 and the most since then was 15 when the Giants played the Anaheim Angels in 2002.

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