Former Laguna Beach High School baseball players Chris Paul (“11), Robbie McInerny (‘13) and Preston GrandPre (‘14) return to southern California as members of the UC Berkeley Bears to take on PAC 12 rivals UCLA Bruins in a crucial three game series, April 16-18.
The Bears, #14 in the Collegiate Baseball rankings as of Monday, April 6, can make a significant move up the polls with a good showing against the third-ranked Bruins.
Paul, who was a Pac-12 player of the week in March, is Cal’s starting first baseman after playing his first three seasons at shortstop. He made the move to make room for the freshman GrandPre, who replaced Paul as the Breaker’s starting shortstop after Paul graduated.
Paul is having his best season so far, leading the team in hitting as of Tuesday, April 7, with a .355 average. He’s also tied for second in RBIs with 26 and HRs with six.
GrandPre has made the transition to Division I college sports with ease and is fourth on the team with 31 hits, and fifth in both RBIs (18) and runs scored (19).
McInerny, a sophomore, is second to Paul in career games played at Laguna, 113 to 107. The duo anchored the Breaker defense up the middle for two seasons, with current Texas Christian University senior Keaton Jones sharing duties at shortstop with Paul while the other was on the mound.
McInerny, who will compete for the starting role as placekicker for Cal’s football team next fall, has yet to see much time on the field with his former Breaker teammates. He has one at bat as of Tuesday, April 7.