From playing at El Camino College to transferring to UNLV for the 2021 season, Diego Alarcon’s favorite part about playing has always been representing his family and his hometown.
Alarcon grew up in Lennox, Cali. following his two older brothers who played baseball, starting at the age of four himself.
“My earliest memory of playing,” Alarcon said, “was being told my first ever baseball team I would be playing for was the Dodgers.”
“If I could play on any MLB team,” Alarcon adds. “It would be the Dodgers no doubt.”
Growing up in Southern California, Alarcon’s favorite MLB team, to no surprise, was the Los Angeles Dodgers, and that has yet to change.
As Alarcon played little league baseball, he idolized former Dodgers’ second baseman Jeff Kent and former Dodgers’ pitcher Eric Gagne.
“There is a high level of baseball from travel baseball up to high school baseball, and junior college competition is tough but it definitely prepares you for the Division l College Baseball.”
After graduating from Robert A. Millikan High School in 2017, lettering three years in baseball, Alarcon went to play for the Warriors of El Camino College, a two-year junior college in Torrance, Cali.
In his freshman year, Alarcon was named to the 2018 American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings Pacific Association Division Gold Glove Team.
Appearing in all 47 games as a second baseman in his first year, Alarcon made only five errors in 212 chances while batting a .328 with 67 hits, 13 doubles, five home runs and 37 RBI.
With a shortened sophomore season due to COVID, Alarcon appeared in 20 games for the Warriors, posting 30 hits, eight doubles, and 15 RBI.
From there, Alarcon would transfer to UNLV for the 2021 season.
“I was given the opportunity to transfer to UNLV after one and a half years of junior college due to Covid,” Alarcon said. “The junior college level mentally and physically prepares you for the next level.”
In his first season at UNLV, Alarcon would appear in 35 games as a third baseman, ending the season with a .336 batting average, 46 hits, 28 runs, 25 doubles, and 24 RBI.
Alarcon would find his home at third base through his seasons at UNLV, but still occasionally fills in at the shortstop position.
Throughout his years of playing, Alarcon said, “I have moved around a bit in the infield, from shortstop to second base and to this day I am able to play all three if it was asked of me.”
Now in his senior season at UNLV, Alarcon has started in all 46 games so far this season, batting a .355 average with 71 hits, 15 doubles, and 45 RBI.
Alarcon is currently ranked second in the nation in total runs with 65 and third in the nation in runs per game.
Batting third in the lineup for UNLV this season, Alarcon reflects on what his favorite part about playing at UNLV is, “My favorite thing about playing at UNLV is being able to be myself and how good the guys in front or behind me are in the lineup. It really takes the pressure off as a hitter and puts everyone in a good place as a hitter.”
While the Hustlin’ Rebels are still in season, Alarcon has not only been a consistent hitter for the team but a leader as well. With his leadership, UNLV opened up conference play with an 11-1 record, their best start ever.
“Being one of the many leaders on this team, is very easy since we each take part in making each other better,” Alarcon said. “It really isn’t tough when you play with a group of guys that really just want to improve everyday and are willing to put the work in.
“I try to be a leader by example and make sure I work as hard as I possibly can and the guy next to me is always willing to do the same… As a team we bring it up and we make sure everyone knows we have each other’s back and we are playing as a family, and that’s exactly what we have become.”
Alarcon, playing with a family on the field, also has a family of his own at home, which is where he spends most of his down time when he isn’t at baseball.
“I enjoy spending time at home with my family of my own,” Alarcon said.
As the Hustlin’ Rebels are near the end of the 2022 season, they are holding on to the first place standings in the Mountain West and will look to take the tournament at the end of May.
Catch Diego Alarcon and the rest of the team during their three-game series against Hawai’i at the Las Vegas Ballpark starting May 6 at 6:05 p.m.