GLENDALE — Editor's Note: The following is a recap of the 2010 local sports scene from the summer and fall seasons.
The second half of 2010 brought numerous headlines, ranging from a former Glendale Community College baseball standout helping the San Francisco Giants capture the World Series to a Glendale college women's golfer winning a state championship to Glendale wrestling the Victory Bell away from cross-town rival Hoover.
The area saw its share of local teams win Tri-Cities District 16 championships in baseball and softball. The Glendale college women's cross-country team relinquished its grip on state supremacy despite enjoying another banner campaign and the Crescenta Valley High boys' water polo team reached the semifinals for the third season in a row.
A local boxer fought and won at Yankee Stadium in a televised event. A freshman enjoyed a breakthrough season on the Crescenta Valley High girls' golf team, falling a step short of qualifying for the state tournament.
In the fall, several athletes earned all-league and All-CIF honors.
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
The top honor in Major League Baseball went to former Glendale Community College standout Freddy Sanchez. Sanchez, a three-time All-Star and a former National League batting champion, saw his dreams of winning a World Series become a reality when he played second base for the world-champion San Francisco Giants. San Francisco beat the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies before besting the Texas Rangers in five games to give the Giants their first crown since 1954.
Trevor Bell, Gregg Zaun, Doug Slaten and Marco Estrada all played at the major league level in 2010.
Bell, a Crescenta Valley High graduate, began the season in the minors before being called up by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in May. Bell, a right-hander, started and relieved for the Angels.
Zaun, a St. Francis High graduate, signed as a free agent with the Milwaukee Brewers after the 2009 campaign. After handling most of the starting catching responsibilities, Zaun suffered what looked to be a possible career-ending injury less than a month into season after he was involved in a home-plate collision and sustained a torn labrum in his right shoulder. Zaun landed on the disabled list May 21 and his season was ruled over in June.
Slaten, who attended Glendale college, began his season in the minors before being called up by the Washington Nationals. He served as Washington's left-handed specialist.
Estrada of Glendale college had his season shut down early by an injury. Estrada began the 2010 season in Nashville before being promoted to Milwaukee, where he made seven appearances, including one start. He suffered a shoulder strain that forced him to miss the rest of the season.
MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
A group of former area standouts either spent all or part of the season in the minor leagues. Some blossomed and climbed up to the major league level, while others encountered injuries.
Bell, Estrada, Slaten, Jason Hirsh, Fernando Rios, Al Quintana, Bryan Longpre, Christian Bergman, Bill Spottiswood, Brandon McCarthy and others all participated in the minors.
Some helped their teams win division championships, while others competed on squads that finished at or near the bottom of the division.
After undergoing extensive renovations in 2009, Oakmont Country Club was open for business in 2010. In late May, the venue hosted a local section qualifying round for the 110th installment of the United States Open Championship at Pebble Beach. The field included several area residents, none of whom advanced. Andrew Putnam won the round with a two-under-par 69.
In August, Oakmont served host to the Southern California PGA Sectional Professional Championship. Chris Starkjohann captured the event with a six-under-par 65 and won the tournament for the third time. There was a touch of local flavor, as Oakmont assistant professional Donny Lee placed third and was part of the field which will compete in the 2011 PGA Professional Championship in June at Hershey Country Club in Hershey, Pa.