Chico State baseball ‘frustrated’ with cancelled season


Julian Mendoza

The Chico State baseball team celebrating a run being scored in the 2020 season. Photo credit:Julian Mendoza

Jorge Perez stayed as optimistic as possible.

The 5-foot-9 infielder from Artesia carried a sliver of hope this offseason the Wildcats would be able to compete at Nettleton Stadium this spring.

Perez got some workouts in this offseason and was able to practice with some teammates which gave him some hope that they would play this spring, but the CCAA announced last Thursday that all spring competition is canceled, including recruitment.

“It’s really frustrating,” Perez said when asked about Division I schools being able to play and not smaller Division II schools. “You see all these other schools practice and have games against each other. We are just here twiddling our thumbs and there is not much else to be said, but that it’s frustrating.”

Perez acknowledges that we are going through a horrible time right now with the pandemic and that we must stay safe.

Perez had a ton of motivation coming into this season because his life changed forever during this pandemic. He had his firstborn child, Juliet, who is now 7 months old.

“It was a big blow because I wanted my daughter to see me play,” Perez said. “You got to deal with the cards that are dealt. Having her around me makes this whole pandemic a little easier.”

With baseball not coming back until at least Spring 2022, Perez doesn’t think he will come back for another season. Perez has plans to graduate in the spring and wants to take his shot in independent ball.

The Chico State baseball team celebrating a run being scored in the 2020 season. Photo credit: Dayanna Negrete

“My main focus is to get my body in shape,” Perez said. “I need to stay in shape so I’m going to the weight room to get some arm strength back. Also to get some at-bats and some ground balls.”

Kristian Scott, a 6-foot-3 pitcher from Glendora, echoed Perez’s sentiment to the news of the season being canceled.

“I mean honestly it’s frustrating because we are playing the exact same sport they are,” Scott said about Division 1 schools getting the opportunity to play. “Baseball is a sport where you are not even standing by people most of the time. The only time we are together is when we are stretching or in the dugout. For the most part everyone is spread out. 

The part that frustrates Scott the most is that the CCAA is shutting down the conference, but the Pacwest, another Division II conference, is proceeding with a spring schedule.

“They have been practicing for a while now,” Scott said. “We are just here not being able to practice.”.

Like Perez, Scott would like to take his talents to independent ball and compete with the pros.

“For my entire life I wanted to play ball for as long as possible,” Scott said. “I am trying to play until that last door is shut. I know there are a few major league teams that might come to tryouts so I will have to see what opportunity arises.”

Adam Muñoz, a senior from Visalia, thought there was a pretty good chance they were going to be able to play this year.

“We all thought we had an opportunity to play this year,” Muñoz said. “It was probably going to be later on like March or April when the season started but it was something to at least look forward to. Getting that message was out of nowhere was rough.”

With coronavirus still surging, Muñoz is happy that he is still able to train five days a week and work with kids on their baseball skills.

Muñoz works with kids two times a week for a couple hours to help them work on their baseball skills and after that, he focuses on his own training.

Sports will not return to Chico State until Fall 2021 and when they do, the Wildcats will be ready to be back to competing,

Matthew Wreden can be reached at [email protected] or @bymattwreden on Twitter.