Socorro baseball coach Lawrence Montano laughs as the umpire explains a call.
Russell Huffman | El Defensor Chieftain

Socorro baseball coach Lawrence Montano is looking for a way to curb bad innings from hampering the Warriors’ ability to win games headed into district play.

“We have been playing some great baseball, and in tournament play, our defense has been on fire,” Montano said.

Then there’s the ‘but.’

“They (Socorro pitchers) were throwing strikes. Our defense was on fire. It was great. It was pretty, and it was the best I’ve seen them play,” Montano said.

Montano was talking about the Warriors’ game against Taos, where Socorro had a 5-0 lead before the wheels came off on defense.

“One bad inning, that’s what hurts us. An error, and then everybody just started getting down on themselves, and they (Taos) started picking away at us,” Montano said.

Moping over mistakes is nothing new for a young ball club, and it’s something Socorro has to get over quickly as the calendar moves ever closer to District 3-3A action.

Left-hander David Gutierrez Jr. is coming off dental surgery and the loss of 15 pounds, but the sophomore is quickly regaining his strength as he works on his patience and control.

Montano wants Gutierrez and senior Marcus Armijo ready to go in time for league play. Armijo also runs track, and outside-of-baseball activities have kept him from working out as much as Montano would like.

“We’ve got most of everything that we need out there on the field. It’s just a matter of getting everybody together and getting them working together, and then we’ll be okay,” Montano said.

Oddly enough, all that coming together only happened once league play started on Wednesday in a home doubleheader against Hot Springs. The Warriors face a four-game road stretch before returning home on April 19 against Cobre.