BRANDON, Miss. — Scouts have been flocking to Brandon to see Mississippi State signee and premium Major League prospect J.T. Ginn pitch this season. In any given game where Ginn has the ball, Brandon coach Stacey Hester estimates there are anywhere from 15-20 MLB scouts in attendance.
They might want to start showing up even when he’s not on the mound.
Ginn is on a tear in the batter’s box — he’s hitting for a .552 average in 48 plate appearances and his eight home runs currently leads the country, according to Maxpreps.com, an online database for high school sports statistics.
“I’ve been coaching for 30 years and he’s the best kid I’ve ever coached and one of the best I’ve ever seen,” Hester said. “He won a game for us with his defense alone last week, and he’s got eight home runs and 16 RBIs.”
It’s not like Ginn hasn’t hit before. Last season, the Clarion Ledger named him the player of the year after he hit .482 with a state-high 16 home runs.
But he’s already halfway to his total in homers from a year ago, and Brandon (8-3, 2-0 in Region 6-6A) is four games shy of the mid-year mark in its 25-game, regular-season schedule.
“I think I only had one or two at this point last year,” Ginn said. “But about halfway through that season, I figured my swing out a little bit and started squaring the ball up more often.”
Ever since then, he’s been a pitcher’s nightmare, hammering 23 home runs in 33 games.