Burbank High Head Coach Bob Hart plays it smarter

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Burbank High baseball Head Coach Bob Hart never takes the easy way out when it comes to scheduling nonleague opponents.

While some believe it’s much better and wiser to play a number of lesser quality teams early in the campaign in order to fatten up your record, others like Hart think it’s smarter to play against better competition even if it means not as many victories.

“We want to play as many good teams as we can even if we’re not going to win many of them because it’s going to help us when the Pacific League comes around,’’ said Hart. “I could schedule teams I know we can beat, but in the long run that’s not really going to help us.’’

A season ago, the Bulldogs were 15-10 overall, 10-4 in league and advanced to the second round of the CIF Southern Section playoffs.

This season the Bulldogs are 1-2 with losses to Notre Dame 11-1 and Ventura 4-0 in the Easton Invitational and a 1-0 win over Cleveland in the same tourney.

Burbank will also meet its longtime rival Burroughs in a league match on Tuesday, May 8  when it will host the Indians and Friday, May 11 when the game will be on the road.

There are many pitchers Hart can choose from and they include junior Matthew Porras, junior Davis Mieliwocki, junior Joey Clark, junior Andrew De La Torre, junior Daniel Ruiz and senior Matt Shaugabay, who will be the closer.

Senior Abiezer Delgado will play first base and sophomore Jacob Duarte will also see time at the position.

Porras and junior Kenny Won and Ruiz will hold down second base, senior Max Meltzer will play shortstop, Mieliwocki will toil at third base and Shaugabay will play catcher.

The Bulldogs will have senior Matt Moreno in left and center field, sophomore Oakley Spens in center field and De La Torre in right field, while Duarte will also spend time in right field.

Senior Austin Ortega, juniors Trent Anderson, Vincent Romano, Cody Winters and Geovork Leklyan will see action in the outfield, while Leklyan will also play second base.

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The Sports Department Rick Assad has written about sports for the Pasadena Star-News and Los Angeles Times. Contact him at richsports5@sbcglobal.net.

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