Back together again

Baseball teammates at Burroughs, Kyle Williams and Mike Diaz have reunited and have helped Cal State L.A. to the Division II World Series

May 26, 2007|By Jeff Tully

As seniors at Burroughs High in 2003, Kyle Williams and Mike Diaz were standout players for the Indians.

"They were our bread and butter that year," said Burroughs Coach Tom Crowther. "They both had a lot of ability and you could tell they were going to go on and be successful in college."

Williams and Diaz, who had played baseball with or against one another since they were 8, relished their time together on the Burroughs team. However, when they graduated four years ago, they realized they would never be teammates again.


Williams moved on to play at Cal State Los Angeles, while Diaz ventured to Florida to play for a small college. He came back to California and competed for East Los Angeles College.

However, little did they know, their careers in baseball would cross paths one more time.

Prior to this season, Williams found out that his former Indian teammate was interested in playing his senior season at Cal State L.A. He was determined to help Diaz facilitate that request.

"When I heard that Mike wanted to come and play for us, I wanted to help him," Williams said. "So, I went into [Coach Pat Shine's] office and told him that he had to get Mike here. I told him what a great player Mike was and what a great addition he would be to our club.

"I knew what Mike can do, and I knew that he would fit right in with us."

Diaz was excited about not only the possibility of playing for a talented Golden Eagles team, and also reuniting with his former high school buddy.

"It was a great opportunity for me, and it was a place that I was hoping I would feel comfortable at," Diaz said. "I liked the team and the program."

Apparently, Williams' recommendation must have helped, as Shine welcomed Diaz to the Cal State L.A. team.

"It was nice that we were able to become teammates again," Williams said. "We took kind of different ways to our senior seasons, but we ended up at the same place."

Williams and Diaz said they have enjoyed the experience of ending their collegiate careers on the same team. However, there's something they have enjoyed just as much — success.

The players have made major impacts this season, leading the Golden Eagles to a breakthrough year.

Last weekend, the team won two big games to advance to the NCAA Division II Baseball Championship.

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