A new era has begun in the baseball program at Palisades High.
After winning the Western League four straight years, the Dolphins became involved in a highly controversial ending to their 2007 season when their pitchers hit seven Chatsworth batters in a playoff game.
Following an investigation, Coach Tom Seyler resigned although he continued at the school in another capacity.
Seyler denied ordering the pitches against one of the nation’s hardest-hitting teams, which had two players selected in the first 11 in the annual baseball draft.
Mike Voelkel arrived from the state of Washington to take over the program.
Palisades failed to score in its first two games this season, losing to LA Poly, 5-0, and Royal, 6-0. The Dolphins then had a 6-6 tie with Roosevelt.
If Palisades isn’t the Western League favorite, who is?
Longtime rival Venice, which has the veteran Tim Alcantar as coach, is off to a 2-6 start.
Venice lost to LACES, 9-3, defeated Locke, 13-2, then lost to Mira Costa, 7-3, and Gahr 13-0.
Cathedral then defeated Venice, 8-1, but Venice earned its second win, 10-1, over Van Nuys before losing to Lincoln, 11-0, and North Torrance, 10-1.
Nick Bair and Zach Mandell have been the Gondoliers’ winning pitchers, and Mitch Takade is batting .400 (8 for 20).