Longmont's Miguel Moroyoqui plays baseball the only way he knows how. The result is often a question of, how does he do it?
Moroyoqui, a two-year starter for the Trojans who earned all-Northern League honors last year, represents the classic case of adversity overcome. At the age of 2, he had a bad household accident that resulted in completely losing his right eye.
At that tender age, when most infants are learning to do more on their own, Moroyoqui's life was set on a path uniquely different. But with perhaps some difficulties that come with having sight in just his left eye, that hasn't stopped him from becoming a well-versed ballplayer.
Arguably one of the most difficult sports to play at a high level is actually the only game Moroyoqui has found comfort in playing.
"I tried basketball for awhile but I just couldn't shoot very well," Moroyoqui said. "I don't try to show off or anything, and people ask me all the time how I can do it. It's really just getting used to everything.
"I've really just been teaching myself how to deal with it."
Moroyoqui took to the sport at an early age and learned the fundamentals just like anyone else. Getting the glove in the air and the bat through the zone, after all, is pretty universal.
Getting used to the lack of depth perception was just that — getting used to it. Every position played defensively requires being shoulders-square to the plate, so playing right field is where Moroyoqui has settled.
He also has an arm that throws ropes, another attribute typical of a right fielder, and last Saturday in a game against Elizabeth he gunned down a runner trying to stretch a single into a double. He has no errors charged to his name this year and had just one all of last year.
At the plate, batters already have a disadvantage against any pitcher. Moroyoqui has tweaked his batting stance over the years to try and get as dead-on a look at the pitcher as he possibly can. Being a left-handed hitter allows him to see the ball make contact with the bat, but it also is tough to get reads on left-handed pitchers.
"I've felt more comfortable from the left side for some reason and I just think it's easier to look in on the pitcher. But you'll see me with an open stance because I can get a better look," Moroyoqui said. "I (favor) righties a lot more. I'm getting better at hitting lefties, but I definitely like the right-handers."
Last year he hit .409 with 21 RBI, nine doubles and a home run, earning him second team all-Northern honors as well as Bocopreps.com all-region honorable mention. Through four games played this year (the team has but six games completed so far), Moroyoqui is hitting at a .429 clip with six hits in 14 at-bats and two RBI.
"He's just been a leader for us, leading the team from that No. 3 hole (in the batting order)," sophomore teammate Noah Befus said.
"We've never really said anything about it because he just plays and works," Longmont head coach Tom Fobes added.
Moroyoqui is looking at playing college ball at a small university or junior college.