Chemistry is something almost every successful team has. It’s immeasurable, but everybody knows when a team has it.
This couldn’t be more true than with the Cal baseball team, which is heading to its first College World Series since 1992, and has two pairs of high school teammates, most notably second baseman Tony Renda and pitcher Logan Scott.
“I said to [Scott], ‘Who would have thought we’d both be at Cal going to Omaha together?’” said Renda, who was named the Pac-10 Player of the Year.
Renda and Scott attended Serra High School in San Mateo and were very successful in those years together.
In their two years as teammates, Serra went 50-13 while claiming two West Catholic Athletic League titles.
Renda and Scott’s Serra team finished as the runner-up in the Central Coast Section Division I playoffs in 2008 and have a chance to claim an even bigger prize with Cal.
“Going back into high school, just getting recruited across the board and being recruited by the same schools, [Renda and I] thought it was a possibility, but now that it’s become a reality, it’s absolutely incredible,” Scott said.
“I’ve lived with him for a couple years now and being able to do it with a guy as good as Tony is and as great a friends as Tony is, it’s very special.”
Scott sustained a displaced fracture in his throwing elbow following his freshman season in 2009, which cost him all of the 2010 season.
Scott entered postseason play with a 3.10 ERA, and has been lights out since, allowing one run in six innings (1.50 ERA).
“He faced some adversity early in his career here,” Renda said. “To come that far and to have one of the dirtiest changeups in the nation, and to [be] going to Omaha, he’s a huge part of it.”
Marcus Seimen and Matt Flemer, who were teammates at St. Mary’s High School in Berkeley, also played with Renda while with a traveling team when Renda was 11 years old.
“When you have a team that grows up with each other, it’s stronger,” Renda said. “You know what you can say and what gets people on track.”
The camaraderie was there coming in, but the potential of losing the baseball program altogether brought the team even closer.
“Having the program scrapped made us stronger as a team,” Renda said. “It brought us all together and it weeded out the people that didn’t want to be here.
“Every single person on this team wants to be here and have this goal [of making the College World Series]. To accomplish it is pretty amazing.”
Cal vs. Virginia
WHEN: Sunday, 11 a.m.
WHERE: TD Ameritrade Park Omaha, Omaha, Neb.