2018 Season Preview: De La Salle Spartans

Blaine Clemmens
Northern California Director of Scouting

As the start of the 2018 high school baseball season in California draws closer, we’ve begun rolling out team previews from around the state.

In this edition we take a closer look at perennial North Coast Section Division 1 contender, the De La Salle Spartans.  DLS has won the last two section titles and has appeared in the last seven NCS championship games. Wow.

Team: De La Salle HS  

Nickname: Spartans

Section: North Coast Section, Division 1

League: East Bay Athletic League

Head Coach: David Jeans (@jeans_david)

Years as Head Coach at DLS: 6

Team Twitter Handle: @DLSBaseball

2017 Overall Record: 21-8

2017 League Record: 9-4

2017 Postseason Finish: North Coast Section Champion, Division 1

Team Website: De La Salle Spartans

Number of Returning Starters: 3

Number of Returning Pitchers: 3

Top Returning Players:

Trace Tammaro: SR/1B - 6’2” 225, L/L, three-year starter, Portland signee

Austin Elder: SR/C - 5’10” 200, L/R, two-year starter, Cal State Northridge signee

Nick Cirelli: SR/RHP-DH - 6’2” 240, L/R, closed championship game last year, Uncommitted

Jack Powers: SR/OF - 6’3” R/R, excellent athlete, one of football team’s top WRs

Other Players To Watch:

Kyle Harrison: SO/LHP-1B - 6’0” 180, R/L, been up to 88 mph, UCLA commit

Chris Santiago: JR/3B-P - 6’1” 185, R/R, middle order type hitter, could fill relief role

Grant Daley: SO/OF - 6’1” 170, R/R, expected to be starting CF, cornerback on football team

Blake Burke: FR/OF-1B-LHP - 6’2” 200, L/L, possible RF starter, multiple D1 offers, 14U USA NTDP

Season Outlook:

When it comes to talking about the Bay Area’s top programs, De La Salle is routinely one of the first programs mentioned.  With years and years of winning at a high level, along with high end players year after year, DLS is a model of how to sustain success over a long period of time.  The Spartans have appeared in seven consecutive NCS DI finals, winning the last two.  2018 looks to be another year of contending to be the last team standing.

There are D1 signees and verbally committed underclassmen on the squad, which is not a surprise.  What many good college recruiters also know is that the DEPTH of the program shows up each spring, when kids who sat behind other D1 talents get their shot to start and prove themselves as 4-year college prospects on their own.  There are no shortage of uncommitted and talented seniors on the Spartans this spring. 

Coach David Jeans has high expectations, starting with contending for a conference title in the ever competitive East Bay Athletic League, battling programs like San Ramon Valley and Monte Vista.  Their non-conference schedule (including the Phoenix Coatings Central California Showcase, March 9-10) will provide numerous stiff tests, with Davis, Elk Grove, Jesuit, Buchanan, Valley Christian, and St. Francis; some of the elite programs in Northern California high school baseball. That is a beast of a schedule!

As for the team itself, they have power up and down the line-up, from senior 1st basemanTrace Tammaro, junior 3rd baseman Chris Santiago, and others.  The left-handed power for the Spartans is particularly impressive.  The top three pitchers are strong (Cirelli, SR RHP Ryan Costeiu, and Harrison) and there are others who will provide excellent depth to the rotation.  Again, that word comes into play with De La Salle, depth.  Up the middle the defense looks to be a strength, starting with Austin Elder at catcher, two seniors in the middle infield, and sophomore Grant Daley in centerfield.

Reaching eight straight NCS DI finals would be a feat almost as impressive as some of the incredible streaks of De La Salle football teams in the past and winning a third straight title would certainly go down as one of the great feats in school history.


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California high school coaches can request a 2019 preseason questionnaire from Northern California Director of Scouting Blaine Clemmens at [email protected] or California State Director of Scouting Les Lukach at [email protected] 

Note: The completion of a questionnaire does not guarantee we will be able to get it posted before the start of the season.