Baldwin softball team starts on Tuesday

BALDWIN — Bob Hilts will have his Baldwin softball team on the diamond next Tuesday and as ready as the Panthers can be to take on a powerful Hesperia squad.

“We’re starting to come along,” Hilts said after a Tuesday practice. “We’re still really green at pitching. Who knows where that’s going to go. I’m hoping it’s going to get better. I’m sure it will as we get going.”

Pitchers for the Panthers will include Grace Lemieux, Nikki Frasier and Rachel Groendyk.

“All three of them are throwing,” Hilts said. “Right now, I’m not so set on who’s the best of the three and who will start. Next week, we have a game on Tuesday with Hesperia. They’re a powerhouse. They’ve always been.”

Looking ahead, “we’re all right, I’m happy,” Hilts added. “Compared to our team last year, we’re leaps and bounds ahead of where we were.”

There are 15 girls on the team including five seniors. Practices started March 13 and Hilts acknowledged that the team is anxious to start playing.

“It didn’t go well today,” Hilts said on Tuesday. “They didn’t field well. My better players didn’t feel well. It just wasn’t a good day of practice. We were tight. If they hit the ball at us, we’ll get them out. But if they hit the ball strong, it could be a short afternoon for us on Tuesday.

“We’ll play and do our best. That’s all I care about. It’s all about having fun. I’m sure it will be a lot of fun this year.”