Want more proof that California has no equal for the past 100 years at having had the best baseball talent in the world? Here’s an updated version of a series of all-area all-region teams from throughout the state that shows elite players have come from everywhere. We did these teams initially seven years ago for an e-book. We have teams from Orange County, San Diego, CIF Sac-Joaquin Section, CIF Central Section, East Bay, San Francisco/West Bay, Long Beach area, Inland Empire and Ventura/Santa Barbara. Plus, go through our all-time All-NorCal and all-time SoCal teams and decide for yourself which one is best.
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Since the weather is mild compared to the rest of the country whether you are in Eureka or San Diego, and since outstanding coaching is abundant as well, a promising baseball player in California can come from anywhere.
In the 2012 National League Championship Series, California’s diversity of where its talent comes from was on display. Closing out the series for the eventual world champion San Francisco Giants was relief pitcher Sergio Romo, who hails from the Imperial Valley town of Brawley. One of the St. Louis Cardinals’ starting pitchers was Kyle Lohse, who is from Hamilton High in the Glenn County community of Hamilton City.
Still, there have been several hotspots over the years from certain areas/regions of the state that have provided an almost hard to believe number of top-flight players to the major leagues. In the early years of the 20th century, San Francisco’s North Beach was one such place. That was followed in the 1950s by Oakland/Alameda County and then in the 1960s by inner city Los Angeles.
In recent years, youth programs in urban areas of Oakland and Los Angeles have become almost extinct. Instead, the talent has been more spread out in places like North San Diego County, Orange County, Riverside County, Ventura County, Contra Costa County and parts of Los Angeles County in the San Fernando Valley and San Gabriel Valley.
An all-time best team from the California’s major cities and regions is below, followed by an all-time top team from Northern California and Southern California. Every team selected was based more on what players did after high school not on what they did during high school and each player is listed with their last school attended.