Season Preview: Esperanza Aztecs

Devon Rodriguez
California Area Scout

With the 2019 high school baseball season just around the corner in California, we have begun rolling out team previews from around the state. Today we focus on the Esperanza Aztecs from CIF-SS Division 2.

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Team: Esperanza

Nickname: Aztecs

Section: Southern Section, Division 2

League: North Hills League / Century Conference

Head Coach/Years at school: Kyle Muhlsteff (3rd Year)

Team Twitter Handle: @Esperanza_BB

2018 Overall Record: 16-11 (4-6, 3rd place League)

2018 Postseason Finish: N/A

Number of Returning Starters: 8

Number of Returning Pitchers: 3

Top Returning Players:

'19 RHP Gavin Lizik, '19 LHP Jacob Cespedes, '19 1B/OF C.J. Larsen, '20 C Jason McDonnell, '21 SS Davis Hildebrandt

Other Players to Know:

'20 OF Kyle Kirk, '20 OF Jackson Van Ness, '20 LHP Peter Fabrizio, '21 RHP Cole Hoffman, '21 RHP/OF Jackson Austin, '22 SS/2B Ryan Kirk, '22 RHP/3B Salvador Moncada

College Commitments: N/A

2019 Outlook:

Esperanza is hungry to get back to the playoffs after missing out last year. This year, Coach Muhlsteff will ride the one-two punch of '19 RHP Gavin Lizik and '19 LHP Jacob Cespedes on the mound. Muhlsteff hopes that these two will be ready to go each week keeping his team in every game and allowing the speed and athleticism of the rest of the team to take over both offensively and defensively. Offensively, Esperanza will look to produce runs in a variety of ways, blending both speed and a little bit of power. They're counting on '19 1B/OF C.J. Larsen, '20 C Jason McDonnell and '21 SS Davis Hildebrandt to be their lineup mainstays and driving force on both offense and defense. This team doesn’t look to have a lot of holes on paper, but it will need to translate to the diamond. If there is one area for concern for Esperanza, it will be getting the day in and day out consistent performances from players. If the team buys in, then there is no telling how far this team can go. All the pieces are there for Coach Muhlsteff to have a successful season and get his team back to the playoffs. The Aztecs will be a very exciting team to follow this upcoming season.


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