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Tri- Cities action on deck

Seven District 16 tournaments to kick off at local facilities in next week.

June 08, 2011|By Charles Rich, charles.rich@latimes.com

GLENDALE — Having spent the past four months practicing and competing in regular season games, the attention of dozens of area Little League baseball and softball players has focused on the seven upcoming District 16 Tri-Cities Tournament of Champions.

Plenty will be at stake for those scheduled to compete, but Dave Ritchie said the teams should be battle tested in the various tournaments.

"I always believe that the All-Stars tournaments are the best because you are getting the best of the best, but they only have a couple of weeks to get ready and they are not used to each playing with other," said Ritchie, the district's volunteer administrator. "The big difference with this tournament is that these teams have been together and practiced since February.

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"They've been together all this time and they have been friends the whole year."

Ritchie said he will be intrigued by what teams are in position to raise the bar throughout the double-elimination tournaments.

"In Junior Baseball, you will get some high school players that are still age-eligible and they can make a big impact on your team," Ritchie said. "I think it's up in the air who can win that one.

"In the Major Baseball, it's the only division where the teams haven't played each other and they'll play on fields that they didn't play on during the regular season. With all of the softballs, the teams have played each other. There's always the possibility of upsets happening. They have experience playing in tournaments and that will help them in this tournament and going into All-Stars."

Two baseball tournaments will kick things off Saturday.

The Minor Baseball will feature opening-round games between Jewel City Mauerhan and the Burbank Yankees at 1:30 p.m. at Babe Herman Field, the Burbank Dodgers against the Vaquero Giants at 1:30 at Scholl Canyon Ball Fields, Jewel City Kiwanis against Jewel City at 4 at Babe Herman and Foothill Crescenta Valley Insurance against the Vaquero Dodgers at 4 p.m. at Scholl Canyon.

Foothill Arroyo, Tujunga Mets, Foothill Bistagne, Burbank Braves, Foothill Lighthouse, Tujunga Dodgers, Burbank Angels and Jewel City Elks will also participate in the tournament.

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