Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

    Hernandez a bright spot for Eagles baseball

    Sophomore pitcher leads Bay Valley Conference in wins and strikeouts

    By Eva Hannan/Co-Editor

    Photo by Tiehui fan / TOWER. Starting pitcher Ricky Hernandez throws against Mendocino College April 9 at home. He came within one out of throwing a complete-game shutout.

    Laney College’s baseball season may not be going as well as hoped, but the campaign might have been a lot worse if it weren’t for players like pitcher Ricky Hernandez.

    The starting pitcher, who went to De Anza High School in Richmond, has been lights out in his last two starts.

    He struck out 13 while allowing only one run in Laney’s 19–1 home victory on April 16 against Napa Valley College.

    In his previous start on April 9, Hernandez pitched 8 plus⅔ innings without allowing a run against Mendocino College in what ended up being an 8–3 victory.

    “Ricky Hernandez and Sonny Brandwood are the most dominant pitchers we have,” Eagles shortstop Sammy Esparza said. A product of Pinole Valley High School, Esparza was accepted at Cal State East Bay in November.

    “They told me I’m gonna be starting, but I’m not taking the foot off the pedal,” he said.

    In Bay Valley Conference play, Laney has an 11–8 record and is 18–16–1 overall with several more games left, but the win-loss record belies some notable performances from both the offensive and defensive side of the diamond.

    Hernandez is 8–2 on the season with a 2.16 earned-run average (ERA). He leads the BVC with 83 strikeouts in 79 innings pitched while allowing 54 hits, 26 runs and 24 walks.

    “The record doesn’t show how good we’ve been playing,” said Brandwood, another durable Eagles starting pitcher. He is 3–3 on the season with 59 strikeouts in 65⅓ innings pitched. He has allowed 57 hits, 37 runs, and 27 walks, and has a 4.41 ERA.

    “My punch-out pitches are a lot better,” said Brandwood, who went to Dublin High. “I developed my cutter, and my slider and my change-up have come a long way from last year. I’ve been getting a lot more strikeouts.”

    Despite the numbers, the players are working to keep the team spirit alive and well, while continuing to improve individual performances.

    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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