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Life goes on in truncated Pacific League baseball

Baseball: Burroughs' decision to cancel its season affects three local programs.

April 20, 2011|By Jeff Tully and Gabriel Rizk, jeff.tully@latimes.com

GLENDALE — Glendale High baseball Coach Jesus Osuna and his team spent their Monday afternoon practice session getting ready to play Burroughs High in a Pacific League game on Tuesday only to find out shortly after practice that the matchup would never take place.

Saying there were "bad decisions made," Burroughs Principal Emilio Urioste said Tuesday that he canceled the Indians' baseball season and fired the school's varsity baseball coach and his three assistants after discovering that one of them served players beer during a recent Arizona trip.

The Nitros, who held a practice Tuesday in lieu of their game, were the first of Burroughs' league mates to feel the direct effect of the abrupt cancelation of the remainder of Indians' season, but won't be the last. The six other league-member schools, which include local programs Crescenta Valley and Hoover, will all feel the repercussions during the remainder of league play, both in the subtraction of games from their schedules and in the impact the Indians' absence will have on the league championship and playoff chase.

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"We try to take as many games as we can just to get us the preparation," said Osuna, whose team had not played Burroughs yet this season and was also scheduled to play the Indians on May 6. "We're almost halfway into the season and we had our practice geared towards preparing for [the Indians] and it's kind of unfortunate we're not going to be able to play them [Tuesday].

"It gives another spot for another team to make the playoffs, which if you're in the division, I guess, is a good thing, but I still think it's a bad thing just for our league because we always try to get as many games as we can and we look forward to playing every team at least twice."

The Indians, 6-8-1 and 3-2 in league with nine league contests remaining, were tied for third in league with Burbank heading into Tuesday's games. Arcadia led the pack at 5-0 going into Tuesday's tilt with Burbank with Crescenta Valley close behind at 5-1 and Pasadena in third at 4-2. Glendale (1-4) and Hoover (2-4) currently occupy the lower half of the standings, but could only see their chances of clinching one of the league's four automatic playoff spots improve with the departure of Burroughs.

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