Head coach: Manny Llamas, first season
2016 record: 18-16 (10-10 Division I Sunrise, sixth)
Returning lettermen (starters): Thirteen (six)
Top players: OF Joey Walls (Jr.), IF Jimmy Gamboa (Jr.), P Layton Walls (Jr.), OF Anthony Guzman (Jr.), IF Edarian Williams (Jr.)
Outlook: Llamas, a 2011 Rancho graduate, returns to his alma mater and inherits a team with 13 returning lettermen.
Gamboa (.378, 23 RBIs), Walls (.369, 21 RBIs), Guzman (.309, 3 triples, 16 RBIs) and Williams (.345, 10 RBIs) all return to spark the offense. Walls (5 wins, 28 innings, 1.00 ERA, 21 K) should be among the team’s leaders on the mound.
“It’s a new coach, a new coaching staff, new look and a new mentality,” Llamas said. “I have a great group of young men who have put in the effort and have bought into the new mentality at Rancho High School.
“We are very excited to showcase what we have been training for since I have taken over the program and are relying on the leadership of Joey, Layton and Jimmy. We will turn some heads this spring.”