Alabama High School Team Preview: East Limestone Indians
January 20, 2021
The 2021 high school baseball season is quickly approaching and as usual, excitement abounds throughout the state. That excitement may be at an all-time high entering this high school season as the 2020 high school baseball season was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Players and coaches have been working in preparation for the upcoming season during an offseason unlike any other and as always, there are some very talented players and teams across Alabama.
Teams across the state have goals and aspirations to finish their seasons in Montgomery at the AISA or AHSAA state championships but there is plenty of work to be done before that becomes reality. We hope to familiarize our readers with many of the teams across the state as we preview individual teams across Alabama. We will take you right up to first pitch this season with these team previews and by continuing our scheduled podcasts and releasing our preseason Top 10 in each AHSAA classification.
*Please note that all information is based on team preview questionnaires that were sent out and returned by the participating high school coaches.
High School: East Limestone High School
Classification: AHSAA 5A Area 16
Positional Starters Returning: 6
Pitchers Returning: 3
Team Strengths: Senior Leadership, Work Ethic, Team Speed, and Team Chemistry
Team Weaknesses: Depth, Area Pitching Experience
Top Returning Players:
Top 2021 Prospects:
2021 OF Hunter McConnell
2021 RHP Grant Thompson
Top 2022 Prospects:
2022 MIF/RHP Jacob Eslick
2022 3B/C/RHP Roger Tidwell
2022 INF/OF/RHP Cameron Franklin
Top 2023 Prospects:
2023 MIF Drake Jackson
2023 OF/INF Ian Browning
2023 INF Caleb Apice
The East Limestone Indians enter the 2021 season with a group of seniors that have provided great leadership for the youngsters. The Indians do return three pitchers from 2020 but there is a lack of experienced pitching in area games. One of those seniors that has provided that needed leadership is C Randael Kelley. He is a three year starter at catcher that does a very nice job behind the plate Kelley will also hit in the middle of the lineup and should be a major run producer in 2021. Kelley recently committed to Martin Methodist. Junior OF/RHP Barrett Brown is a two year starter and will see action on the mound in area series. Brown will hit in the lead off spot and has speed and power to all fields. The junior really understands the game. Senior INF/RHP Ty Scott will also be a two way talent for the Indians in 2021. He is another two year starter on the infield and (like Brown) will see actionin on the mound in area series. He will hit in the middle of the lineup and shows a live arm with plenty of range and is a good runner. There are a few seniors that look to have increased roles in 2021. One of those is OF/RHP Connor Phillips. He is a strong kid with a great work ethic and will need to contribute at the plate and on the mound for East Limestone this season. OF Hunter McConnell is another senior with expectations for a big year in 2021. He is coming off a shoulder Injury and didn't get as many opportunities last season when the season was cut short. He has a great work ethic and will compete for a starting job in the outfield. RHP Grant Thompson is another senior that brings a tremendous work ethic every day. He has had a great offseason getting stronger and improving velocity and will compete for a starting rotation spot for the Indians. Five juniors to keep an eye on this year are:
2022 OF/RHP Joseph Thallas- He looking to lock down the centerfield position for the Indians. He was moved up in the middle of the season last season from the JV and made an imediate impact. He is looking on continuing that for the 2021 season and has a great attitude and work ethic with a solid offensive approach and great speed.
2022 MIF/RHP Jacob Eslick- He is a tall RHP/INF looking at competing for a spot in the starting rotation and on the middle infield and first base.He also plays basketball for the Indians.
2022 3B/C/RHP Roger Tidwell- A junior who is needed to step up and play an everyday roll on the infield and on the mound. Tidwell has a lot of upside at the plate and on defense.
2022 LHP/1B/OF Kaiden Davis- Pitched really well for the Indians JV team last season and will need to step up into a varsity role this season.
2022 INF/OF/RHP Cameron Franklin- A tall strong kid who runs well and has a live arm. Franklin will have every opportunity to win a starting position and get some time on the mound in varsity action.
The Indians sophomore class is a talented group with a strong work ethic. The names below may see action at the varsity level this but if not, they will be definite contributors in the next few years.
3B/RHP Logan Wales, C Garrett Williams, MIF Drake Jackson, OF/INF Ian Browning and INF Caleb Apice
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