He puts Mikah Abbott up there with the best of them.
Abbott started on Blair’s staff as a freshman. With each passing year, Abbott transformed himself into a top of the rotation ace like so many Eagles before him.
Abbott is the 2013 Daily Mountain Eagle’s Baseball Player of the Year.
“We’ve had a lot of good pitchers. Mikah falls into that category,” Blair said. “Every time you give him the ball, you know you had a good chance to win.”
Abbott won more than 20 games in his Sumiton Christian career. This season Abbott finished 7-3 on the mound with a save, a 2.19 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP.
Abbott’s knack for throwing strikes — and piling up strikeouts — set him apart from most high school pitchers.
In 64 innings of work, Abbott allowed just 14 walks while striking out a school record 108 batters — edging former Sumiton Christian aces Ricky Bowen and Josh Rouse by a single K.
What made Abbott so effective?
“Just a combination of having an idea of how to pitch and his movement. It’s hard to hit against guys who have that kind of movement and who can throw all of his pitches for strikes. A lot of guys have a flat fastball. He’s got some movement on his,” Blair added.
Abbott, who played first base or third base when he wasn’t pitching, was also one of the Eagles’ best hitters with a batting average of .337 and an on-base percentage of .500.
Abbott scored a team-high 39 runs for a Sumiton Christian team that advanced to the second round of the state playoffs, losing to South Lamar in a decisive Game 3.
On the season, Abbott struck out just 11 times while drawing 25 walks.
“Mikah has batted in the four hole for us the last two years. He had some big hits along the way. He’s pretty disciplined. He finds a way to get on,” Blair said. “He was our leader on the field. He has such a good idea of what we are trying to accomplish. He definitely worked at his game, that’s something our young kids could look up to.”
Blair added that Abbott was also a great fielder.
“Defensively, without him things would have been pretty rough,” Blair said.
Abbott was one of three seniors on this year’s Sumiton Christian team that finished as the Class 1A, Area 10 champion with a 19-11 overall record.
Player of the Year
Sumiton Christian’s Mikah Abbott
Coach of the Year
Addison’s Jeff Sudduth
Kaleb Estill, Rhett York and Levi Tyree
Cordova Blue Devils
Andrew Minor, Cam Honeycutt and Stephen Kilpatrick
Andrew Welch, Case Key and Jase Trotter
Austin Bice and Austin Clark
Corner Yellow Jackets
Blake Byrd and Cody Gilbert
Curry Yellow Jackets
Lane Oliver and Houston Harbin
Quinton McCarty and Logan Nix
Addison’s Jake Seymore, John Everett
Cordova’s Zac Guerra and Jeffre Wingo
Oakman’s Zac Blanton
Walker’s Stone Stephenson, Bailey Tidwell
Curry’s Landon Freeman and Chad Gann
Dora’s Blake Stone and Stonie Phillips
Sumiton Christian’s Evan Love