The United League Baseball has completed 30 per cent of its 80-game 2009 season, with the San Angelo Colts holding its first place position with a 16-8 record.
But, the others in the league are more than in the running after the first six series of play.
The Amarillo Dillas (13-11), Coastal Bend Thunder (13-11), Edinburg Roadrunners (12-12) and even the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings (10-14) with winning splurges could be right up there with the Colts in the young season.
Don’t count out the Laredo Broncos (8-16) either. This is a ball club that is second in hitting, behind the Colts, and with more solid pitching also can move up in the standings. They have three hitters in the top 10.
They proved they can be contenders when they whipped the Colts, 14-5 on Sunday (July 5).
With the sixth series of play (24 games) completed, the Colts. winners in seven of their last 10 games, are three games ahead of second place Amarillo and Coastal Bend. The Thunder are 5-5 in their last 10 games, while the Dillas are 4-6.
The Edinburg Roadrunners and the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings follow, with the Broncos in sixth place.
The Wings, who had won five straight have now lost six consecutive games, most recently four to the Roadrunners.
The Colts, as a team, are batting .311 and two of their players, Bryan Frichter (.440), and Jason Landreth (.369)) are first and eighth in hitting.
Although in last place, the Broncos are second in hitting with a .298 mark. The Broncos have won five of their last 10 games, after having a real dry spell in winning.
Amarillo is third in hitting at .275. Next are the WhiteWings and the Roadrunners, each at .263 and Coastal Bend is .245.
The Colts have a five-game winner in Chandler Bernard, followed by teammates Brian Henschel with four (and an 1.60 ERA) and former Astros pitcher Ezequiel Astacio with three. Wings hurler Reymund Cruz also has three wins.
Other top hitters include:
Jason Landreth, San Angelo, (.369); Trent Lockwood, Amarillo, (.360); Dave Cardona, Laredo, .(.357); Miguel Cortez, Laredo, (.354); Mario Mendez, Laredo, (.340); Santeil Smith, Amarillo, (.338); Rico Santana, Rio Grande Valley, (.338); and Augustin Septimo, Rio Grande Valley, (.337).
Landreth leads in RBIs with 29, and Lockwood, Frichter and Leive Ventura, Coastal Bend, each have 25.
Lockwood and Landreth lead in home runs with eight, followed by Poterson with seven.
Frichter leads in stolen bases with 16 while Dustin Smith, Coastal Bend, son of Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith, is second with 15.
The Wings closer, Julio Santana, has five saves and Chase Vacek, San Angelo, has four.
There was more changing going on the past week. The league got its first ever Japanese player when the WhiteWings signed infielder-outfielder Daisuke Yoshida, who had been playing for the South Maryland Blue Crabs in the Atlantic League.
Also, the Dillas signed free agent infielder Rafael Ozuna and placed infielder Corey Logan and right handed pitcher Josh Smith on the inactive list.
Upcoming games include:
Thursday (July 10) — July 13 - Laredo at Amarillo, Coastal Bend at Edinburg, and Rio Grande Valley at San Angelo.
Monday (July 14) — July 17 — Edinburg at Amarillo, Coastal Bend at San Angelo and Rio Grande Valley at Laredo.
Amarillo and Laredo posted some nice attendance marks for the July 4th games. The Dillas drew 6,787, while the Broncos had 4,680. The Roadrunners had 1,833.