Before baseball Trammell rewarded as Class A Offensive Player of the Year (Marietta Daily Journal)

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For someone who may never play another football game, Mount Paran’s Taylor Trammell had a decorated senior year, with a county-record 2,479 yards on the ground.

For someone who may never play another football game, Mount Paran’s Taylor Trammell had a decorated senior year, with a county-record 2,479 yards on the ground. (photo by Kelly J. Huff)

by Adam Carrington, Marietta Daily Journal

Taylor Trammell got a late start to the football season.

Having decided that his future would rest in baseball, and with a verbal commitment to play the sport at Georgia Tech, Trammell’s focus remained on the diamond in August, when the Mount Paran Christian football team was going through its preseason workouts. He was a late roster addition for the Under Armour All-America game at Chicago’s Wrigley Field six days before Mount Paran’s regular season started.

Trammell turned his full-time focus to football only days before Mount Paran traveled to Asheville, North Carolina, for its season-opening game, but he quickly proved he was the right man for the job to replace former Eagles running back Dorian Walker in the starting lineup.

The 6-foot-2, 190-pound Trammell tallied 2,479 yards and 36 touchdowns on 251 carries, tacked on 144 receiving yards on 17 catches with two extra touchdowns and was named the Georgia Sports Writers Association’s Class A Offensive Player of the Year.

“It’s a blessing, I’m pretty much speechless through the whole thing,” Trammell said. “Obviously, there are some great players in Class A. Some are going off to college to play in big-time schools. I’m extremely humbled by all the (media) who have nominated me.”

Trammell didn’t have to catch up on learning Mount Paran’s playbook once he was done with baseball. It was a matter of getting in football shape. Although Trammell had 200 yards and three touchdowns as the new starter in the Eagles’ 42-35 win over Erwin High School, he said he was gassed by the fourth quarter.

All he needed was a full week of practice to put an end to that problem.

When Trammell was pulled at the beginning of the fourth quarter the following game against Whitefield, after Mount Paran built a sizable lead, he felt no fatigue.

Afterwards he made the position his own.

“He’s been a key part of our offense the past couple of years,” Mount Paran coach Mitch Jordan said. “He had to carry the majority of the load. A lot fell on his shoulders, and his response to that is just typical Taylor.”

An elusive runner known for making tacklers miss, Trammell got his yards and touchdowns in bunches.

He had 15 touchdowns after the first four games and notched 234 yards and three touchdowns against Pinecrest Academy in late September. He added another 241 yards and four scores against Walker.

However, the game Trammell’s remembered the most was against Mount Zion-Carroll, when he played despite feeling ill.

The Eagles maintained the lead the entire game, but Mount Zion was moving the ball in the second half in attempt to take the lead. Trammell, who wasn’t at full strength, entered the game as a defender and halted Mount Zion’s drive with a fumble he forced and recovered on the same play.

Trammell followed that up with consecutive rushing touchdowns to help the Eagles seal a 35-18 win.

“I was really feeling bad (against Mount Zion) but knew the pain and exhaustion wouldn’t last forever,” Trammell said. “I just had to go out there and do it. We needed it.”

Though his high school football career ended with Mount Paran’s second-round loss in the Class A private-school state playoffs, Trammell is not ruling out the possibility of donning the pads again at Georgia Tech.

There’s a chance that he may be a high-round pick in this year’s baseball amateur draft, but if Trammell ends up at Georgia Tech in the fall, he may consider pulling double duty.

“I can still go try out for football if the pro baseball draft doesn’t pan out,” Trammell said. “I still feel I can go back and play football — give it a try.”

Tech 2015 Recruiting Class Ranked 4th by @BaseballAmerica

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Full story (Baseball America subscription required)

Georgia Tech stayed local and took advantage of a strong year for the state’s high schools. All of the Yellow Jackets’ incoming freshmen are products of metro Atlanta high schools. The talent the group brings is enough to return Georgia Tech to the rankings for the first time since 2010.

Jonathan Hughes is perhaps the most famous, after spurning the Orioles. He gets good life on his fastball, which touches 95 mph, and throws both a slider and a curveball.

Tristin English is a talented hitter (he hit .632/.740/1.279 in the spring), but has even more potential on the mound and was drafted as a pitcher. He’ll be a two-way player in college, capable of getting up to 95 mph with his fastball while also hitting for power.

Brandt Stallings showed off big power of his own in high school and won the home run derby at the 2014 Perfect Game All-American Classic. That pop comes with a lot of swing-and-miss, but he has the potential to add more thump to the Yellow Jackets’ lineup.

Joey Bart and Keyton Gibson were teammates on Buford High’s Class 4-A state championship team this spring. Bart was the first position player drafted in school history and generates easy bat speed that translates into above-average power potential. Gibson is a hard-throwing righty with an ideal pitcher’s frame and could develop into a weekend starter in time.

Carter Hall, the son of coach Danny Hall, is capable of playing shortstop, but has the versatility to handle second base, third base or center field. He’s a plus runner that profiles as a top-of-the-order hitter.

Like Hall, Jackson Webb is a speedy middle infielder who has taken up switch-hitting.

Bobby Gavreau has a heavy fastball that gets up to 92 mph and has the look of a late-inning reliever.

Baseball America reports from NHSI Tournament

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Nathan Rode reports on ten underclassmen who put themselves on the scouting “radar for 2013 and beyond” at the recent USA Baseball National High School Invitational in Cary, N.C. — including Tech commits Josh Hart and Arden Pabst.

Josh Hart:
” A junior, Hart has a wiry frame and stands out for his speed and defense.”

Arden Pabst:
“has solid catch-and-throw skills now and handled the bat well at the NHSI, showing a short swing and squaring up pitches regularly.”

Full story (Baseball America subscription required)