Alex Solis had no idea who Martin Gomez and Ruben Casas were until his final season with Central Valley High School’s varsity baseball team.
Gomez and Casas are two of the Hawks’ all-time greatest players.
Casas was voted Western Athletic Conference Most Valuable Player his senior year in 2013. He earned first-team, all-WAC honors as a sophomore.
Gomez was selected to the Valley Oak League Team his senior and junior years. He was a second-team pick as a sophomore.
A four-year contributor, Solis’ play over the past three seasons catapulted him into the conversion as one of Central Valley’s elite performers.
“It feels amazing to be one of the top players in the school’s history.”Alex Solis
“I never really thought of it as a possibility until the end of this year,” said Solis, a standout hitter and shortstop. “It feels amazing to be one of the top players in the school’s history.”
Solis received first-team all-league accolades in two different leagues, including the Central California Conference this season and WAC in 2018. He garnered second-team recognition his sophomore year.
“It’s definitely a good feeling to be recognized for all the hard work I put in,” he said. “The goal of playing college baseball was the motivation.”
Hawk sophomore outfielder Angel Vega was also rewarded for his outstanding play this spring.
Solis batted .339 from the plate with four homers, three triples, 31 doubles, 100 hits, 55 RBIs, 81 runs and 39 stolen bases in 105 career games.
He had an on-base plus slugging percentage of .985.
Solis totaled seven wins at pitcher with 184 strikeouts and three shutouts in 1592/3 innings.
“I’ve grown a lot over the last four years,” he said. “From freshman to senior year, I learned to put the team first. I was less of a selfish player. That benefitted me and the team as a whole.”
Solis set career-high marks for batting average (.467), homers (4), doubles (12), hits (35), RBIs (19), runs (27), on-base percentage (.588), slugging percentage (.786) and on-base plus slugging percentage (1.375) his senior year.
He also had career-best marks for wins (4), ERA (2.36), strikeouts (59) and complete games (2) on the mound.
“I felt confident in myself all year,” he said.
Solis helped the Hawks secure their first-ever CCC victory.
His line-drive single to left field propelled Central Valley to a 5-4 extra-inning win over Golden Valley on March 19 in Ceres.
“I feel comfortable when those situations come around,” he said. “I don’t feel nervous.”
Vega batted .323 from the plate with two doubles, 21 hits, three RBIs, 18 runs and seven stolen bases.
He had an on-base percentage of .488.
Promoted to varsity in the ninth grade by head coach Derrick Goblirsch, Solis struggled offensively before finding his groove.
“My first season started off rough,” he said. “I was trying to do too much. I thought I had to prove myself because I was a freshman. His (Goblirsch’s) confidence in me gave me a lot of confidence. He leaned on me for a lot of things my junior and senior years.”
Solis will continue his baseball career at Stanislaus State.
“I’m really happy with my four years of high school,” he said. “I’ve shown great improvement. I was able to produce for the team. I definitely would have liked to win more games.”