PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast's Brandon Parker has been named to the NJCAA Division II All-American Baseball First Team for his record-breaking season.
"The numbers he put up this year are unheard of for a freshman," Gulf Coast coach Rodney Batts said. "He did it all year. He did it during non-conference, during conference and the postseason. I was really excited for him and what he was able to do as a freshman."
Parker, a left fielder from West Harrison High School, broke the Gulf Coast record for home runs with 24, passing Adam Huddleston's mark of 19 set in 1998. That ranked second in NJCAA Division II, and his 81 RBI led the country. Parker batted .424, reached base 50 percent of the time and slugged .932. He had 14 doubles and two triples.
"It's an honor to be called All-American because there are so many kids that want to have this accomplishment," Parker said. "It's all I've really worked for all my life to be called an All-American."
Parker is playing with the New Market Rebels this summer. New Market, about 60 miles north of Charlottesville, is part of the 11-team Valley Baseball League in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. It's a wood-bat league sanctioned by Major League Baseball.
He had a pair of three-home run games, one seven-RBI game and three six-RBI games.
Parker played a big role in leading the Bulldogs to their first appearance in a region tournament since 2012. He batted .391 with four home runs and 10 RBI in six playoff games.
"People saw his numbers coming into conference and he started getting pitched differently," Batts said. "He made some adjustments. The numbers he put up are just amazing."
Only three MACJC players were selected All-Americans. Designated hitter Trace Johnson from Meridian made the first team, and Pearl River infielder Simon Landry was on the second team.
Parker is MGCCC's first All-American since Brian Lane in 2015. The school has had 24 All-Americans.
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