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All-Tribune Baseball Team

Tyler Takeda/The Madera Tribune

Madera South’s Murf Gray holds up his All-Madera Tribune certificate and his gift certificate from Perko’s Cafe and Grill for getting named The Madera Tribune’s Baseball Most Valuable Player. Gray is a two-time MVP and will play at Fresno State next season.


Most Valuable Player

Murf Gray

Sr. P-IF Madera South

All-League: County/Metro Athletic Conference 1st Team

Stats: .383 BA, 22 runs, 31 hits, 8 2B, 31 RBI; 5-1, 0.99 ERA, 100 K-56.2 IP, 8 ER, 12 BB.

Gray has been one of the best players in Madera for the past four years. He is a two-time Madera Tribune Most Valuable Player and a two-time All-County/Metro Athletic Conference 1st team selection. Gray is the one player that if you mention Madera South, they always want to know about Gray. Not only is he a dominant hitter that played shortstop, third base, first base and centerfield this year, he was just as dominant on the mound. He battled through injuries this year, but still was the best player in Madera and one of the best in the Central Section. He put a capper on his career by picking up the win in the Div. IV Central Section Championship game. He came in with runners on base in the fourth and got out without allowing a run in Madera South’s 3-1 victory.

Offensive Player of the Year

Xavier Cantu

Jr. C Madera South

All-League: CMAC 1st Team

Stats: .393 BA, 16 runs, 33 hits, 9 2B, 1 HR, 25 RBI.

It’s one thing when you can produce at the plate. It’s another thing when you can do that while providing solid work behind the plate wearing the tools of ignorance. That’s what Cantu was able to do. He did it with a positive attitude and helped the Madera South line-up. He protected Gray and forced pitchers to pitch to him. Cantu actually led the Stallions in hitting and was second to Gray in RBIs, but also led the team in doubles and hit a key home run in the Div. IV Central Section title game. He is a two-time All-Tribune selection.

Utility Player of the Year

Jakson Bucher

Sr. IF-P Liberty

All-League: North Sequoia League Utility Player of the Year, 1st Team

Stats: .468 BA, 52 hits, 44 runs, 32 RBI, 19 2B, 4 3B; 1-1, 2.33 ERA, 10 G, 1 save, 16 K-15 IP.

Bucher is a three-time All-Tribune selection and probably would have been a rare four-time recipient if there was a 2020 season. He ranks among the best players in Liberty history and probably has his name amongst the leaders in a number of categories. He also provided a late-inning lift on the mound and gave head coach Derrik Kuhn and option when the game was on the line.

The Team

Xavier Gordon

Fr. C Liberty

All-League: NSL 2nd Team

Stats: .384 BA, 20 runs, 33 hits, 22 RBI, 4 2B.

Gordon’s emergence allowed Kuhn to deploy Max Vestal as his super sub. Vestal caught last season, but Gordon solidified the position and allowed Vestal to play all over the field. Just a freshman, Gordon has the chance to get better and better. He needs to work on a quicker release to slow down the running game, but there is no doubt he will get able to get that done.

McGuire Smith

Jr. 1B Liberty

All-League: NSL 1st Team

Stats: .435 BA, 37 runs, 50 hits, 32 RBI, 9 2B, 3 3B, 3 HR; 3-0, 2.86 ERA, 18 K-22 IP.

Keeping the line of excellent Liberty players, Smith will be counted on to replace Bucher’s production at the plate. Smith was Liberty’s lead-off batter, but wasn’t a typical lead-off batter. He had the ability to hit for power and drive in runs. He tied Bucher for the team lead in home runs and RBIs and was second on the team in hits and doubles. He is a two-time All-Tribune selection.

Tyler Zamora

Sr. 2B Madera

All-League: City/County All-Star game participant

Stats: .286 BA, 14 runs, 22 hits.

Zamora played every game, but three for the Coyotes and it was easy for head coach Andy Underwood to write his name on the line-up card and put him at second base. He tied for the team lead in hits and provided solid leadership in the middle of the diamond for the Coyotes. He was also solid defensively, playing at second base all season.

Eric Wilson

Jr. 3B Madera

Stats: .310 BA, 15 runs, 22 hits, 16 RBIs, 4 3B, 4 HR.

An oversight by the County/Metro Athletic Conferene coaches for the All-League baseball team. Wilson was the team leader offensively and was solid at third base. The lefty led the team in batting average, runs, RBIs, triples and home runs. He tied for the team lead in hits and will be counted on to lead the Coyotes next year.

Nate Medina

Jr. 3B-P Liberty

All-League: NSL 1st Team

Stats: .400 BA, 23 runs, 36 hits, 35 RBIs, 9 2B; 8-2, 2.56 ERA, 67 K-52 IP.

Medina’s name could have been chiseled in stone at the clean-up spot in the Liberty batting order. He played third base and was the team’s ace. He led the team in RBIs and tied for second with doubles. He was also second in hits. He also led the Hawks with eight wins and struck out a team-leading 67 batters. Medina is a two-time All-Tribune selection and still has a year to go.

Gilbert Moisa

Soph. IF Madera South

Stats: .360 BA, 14 runs, 31 hits, 12 RBIs.

Moisa did most of his work at the top of the Madera South line-up. He set the stage for Gray and Cantu to drive him in. Moisa also provided solid work at shortstop when Gray was pitching and also held it down while Gray moved around the field to keep the defense stout. Moisa is only a sophomore and he will be counted on to lead the Stallions for the next two years.

Danny Sandante

Fr. OF-P Liberty

All-League: NSL 2nd Team

Stats: .333 BA, 21 runs, 24 hits, 21 RBIs; 4-0, 3.67 ERA, 26 K-21 IP.

Sandante kept building on his freshman year. He played in almost every game for the veteran Hawks’ team. He was a fixture in centerfield and also had some key innings on the mound. He tossed four innings of shut out baseball against Div. II Central Section Champion Clovis East. He allowed the Hawks to walk off the win.

Brian Monges

Sr. OF-P Madera South

Stats: .367 BA, 20 runs, 29 hits, 15 RBI, 3 2B; 3-2, 1.91 ERA, 20 K-33 Ip.

Monges is one of the best defensive centerfielders in the Central Section. He gets great jumps in the outfield. A ball has to be hammered to get over Monges’ head. He hit at the top of the line-up for the Stallions and was one of the team’s best hitters. He was third on the team in batting average and second in RBIs. Monges was the No. 2 pitcher for the Stallions, but became No. 3 with the emergence of Jorge Gutierrez and provided solid production from the mound. He is a two-time All-Tribune selection.

Adam Landero

Sr. RF Madera

All-League: CMAC 2nd Team

Stats: .290 BA, 18 hits, 15 RBIs

One of the most solid players for Underwood. A player that could be written in pen in right field for the Coyotes. He played very well defensively and his offense came around once he was put at the top of the line-up. He was the Madera Tribune’s Defensive Player of the Year for the football team. Landero was second on the team in batting average and RBIs.

Anthony Gamiz

Sr. RF Madera South

Stats: .286 BA, 19 runs, 24 hits, 13 RBIs.

Another unsung player for the Stallions. Any Madera South baseball player can tell you that playing right field at Eddie Chapa Field is not an easy task. Gamiz made it look easy over the last three years as the starter in right field. Not only did he provide the defense, he also came up clutch when it counted while providing a little speed on the bases. He originally was a catcher and worked hard to become a solid right fielder.

Francisco Espejo

Jr. P Madera

All-League: CMAC 2nd Team

Stats: 3-6, 2.40 ERA, 73 K- 58.1 IP

Espejo became the ace of a young staff. He has pitched in big games throughout his baseball career and showed no fear in pitching against some of the best teams in the Central Section. He will be counted on to lead a staff that featured two freshmen last season.

Jorge Gutierrez

Jr. IF-P Madera South

All-League: CMAC 2nd Team

Stats: .286 BA, 14 runs, 22 hits, 3 3B; 2-3, 1.96 ERA, 26 K-39.1 IP.

Gutierrez stepped up to become one of the top pitchers on the team. That’s saying something when Murf Gray is the ace. Gutierrez anchored the bottom of the batting order for the Stallions, but stepped up most when he was needed on the mound. He battled the tough teams in the CMAC and came away with much-needed experience. He will be the ace of the Stallions during the team’s championship defense.

Dylan Whiteman

Jr. 1B-P Liberty

All-League: NSL 2nd Team

Stats: 7-3, 3.56 ERA, 60 K-55 IP.

Whiteman became the Hawks’ 1A ace next to Medina. Medina usually got the opposing team’s ace, but Whiteman battled with many No. 2s and came away successful. Whiteman delivered when it counted. He was the one Kuhn counted on when the Hawks faced the Stallions in the div. IV semifinals. Kuhn had no problem starting either Medina or Whiteman against any pitcher.

Max Vestal

Sr. IF-OF Liberty

All-League: NSL 2nd Team

Stats: .341 BA, 30 runs, 31 hits, 28 RBIs, 8 2B, 3 3B, 3 HR.

Liberty’s top four batters were a murderer’s row. Most of the time, team’s couldn’t get through Liberty’s top of the line-up unscathed. With Smith at the top, followed by Bucher, there was plenty of opportunities for Vestal at No. 3. He was fourth on the team with 28 RBIs and also muscled up for three home runs. He was valuable for Kuhn for his ability to play almost every position. He also had the walk-off walk in a win over Clovis East and a walk-off single in a comeback win over Washington Union. Vestal is a two-time All-Tribune selection.

Eljah Tang

Jr. IF-OF Madera South

Stats: .297 BA, 13 runs, 19 hits, 4 2B.

Sometimes, Madera South head coach Alan Sandoval wrote Tang’s name in the clean-up slot. That says a lot of Tang’s ability to hit with runners on base. He had a knack for the clutch hit with a solºid at-bat. He also was important with his ability to play around the field. He played left field, center field and second base for the Stallions. He is a two-time All-Tribune selection.



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