LUTZ-A lack of preseason action, practices, and a change from a regular season opener at home moved to King high school are all factors for why a offensive struggling Steinbrenner Warriors baseball team may have lost Wednesday night, 2-0. But the more plausible reason is that they had more offensive strikeouts and fly balls hit directly into the defense’s glove than actual hits and runners reaching base safely.
The Warriors, blessed with a great combination of solid offense and defense, dominating pitching, and good coaching has surrounded the team since day one of it’s opening years ago. But now, it’s time for a rebuilding, laying a new foundation for a sturdy Warrior offense with the departure of powerful bats from last year’s lineup like Cole Gordon and Kevin Merrell. But still, offense wasn’t the only mishap on the field as errors were the sole reason the King Lions managed to put points on the board.
In the top of the second inning, with returning senior pitcher, Ryan Fatzinger on the mound for Steinbrenner, two Lions reached base safely, the first on a single and the next on a double. With the Warriors all ready to test their fresh bats, a deep fly ball was hit to left fielder Micahel Pierro. With the ball coming down right at him, it bounces right out of his glove allowing the two runners to score and secure the only runs they would need to come away with a King victory.
“Our pitching is fine. It’s the offense that has to change. We have to execute better. We have to get runners in safely from running the bases,” said Fatzinger.
From there on, Fatzinger was lights out striking out six, allowing only three hits, and walking zero. The Warriors offense left numerous runners on base having only three hits and walking twice. They struck out six times.
“I think that the kids feel that they have to fill a big role instead of doing what they actually have to do. Just hit the ball,” said Fatzinger.
Hoping to change their style of play, the Warriors hope to secure a win against a visiting Brandon high school Friday night at 7 PM.
Written by Evan Abramson/Online Sports Editor