January 8, 2020 328 PM
PRESIDIO — Presidio High School held a signing ceremony to celebrate senior Albian Amancio’s commitment to play college baseball at Mid-Plains Community College in McCook, Nebraska this fall.
His coach (and older brother) Alonzo Amancio credits the player’s success to discipline and hard work. But Albian also attributes his budding sports career to his family’s help. His dad and brothers played ball before him, and he’s been involved in the family sport since childhood.
“Since he was five years old, we’ve never had trouble with him. He motivates himself,” Alonzo says. “He has been on this baseball mindset to become better every day, and for me it has been a privilege to coach a player like that.”
When Coach Alonzo was playing baseball at PHS, and later at Sul Ross State University, he says he didn’t have some of the support that could’ve made his path easier. Alonzo’s parents worked hard to provide him with a baseball glove, and the older brother decided to do the same for Albian.
“Since he was five years old he has shown me that he loved the sport, that he had talent, and I wanted him to have what I never had. I always wanted to be there for him. I didn’t have anybody to support me money-wise or with time, to throw me some ground balls and practice playing.”
Alonzo paid for Albian’s training camps, gym membership, meal prep and any other expenses that arose as the budding pitcher worked his way to a college scholarship for pitching.
The PHS senior became a right-handed pitcher out of necessity. “I had to pitch, because it’s a small town,” he says. Albian hopes his origins in small-town Presidio will also help make the adjustment to Nebraska easier.
“McCook seems like it’s a small town, so I think it’s going to be the same as living here. I’m just going to need to adapt to the weather, which is more cold.” He says his mom’s main concern is how far away he’ll be, and Coach Alonzo joked he might have to start applying to jobs in Nebraska to stay near his brother.
“I have been working with him since he was five years old,” Alonzo says. “He’s a very disciplined kid and hard working. He has a good work ethic, and he never talks, he just comes, and works out, and listens, and does it.”
After sustaining an injury that required surgery on his shoulder, this year Albian will be working to get back to his old strength level, pitching up to 88 miles per hour.
In college, Albian plans to study business to learn more about the stock market and real estate. He expects playing at the college-level will mean faster gameplay, faster runners and faster pitching.
Alonzo says going pro is possible “with hard work and dedication, so hopefully he works hard for it.” Albian looks up to Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman, and one day aspires to sign with the Saint Louis Cardinals – but for now he’s looking forward to one last high school season with his friends.
He and his PHS teammates will have their season opener on February 25 in Presidio against Fort Stockton.