Stepping onto the pitcher's mound never seems to faze Rockmart's Ty Floyd.
After a regular season of causing headaches for local teams, the 17 year old didn't miss a step when it came to the postseason, all while helping guide the Yellow Jackets to the Class AA state baseball championship series.
Floyd's performance this past season earns him the title of 2019 Rome News-Tribune Baseball Player of the Year and the leader of the RN-T 2019 All-Area Baseball Team.
The LSU commit said while he was happy with the way the season turned out, even with Rockmart falling one win short of a state championship, he is proud of how he and his teammates did their jobs.
“It was one to remember,” Floyd said. “We made it a lot further than people expected. We showed out. We all did stuff that we needed to do to help the team win. Each player accepted their role to make sure we went on to the next round.”
His performance on the mound was a special thing to see for head coach Kenny Yanzetich, who coached his team to a 29-11 season and a Region 7-AA championship.
“His playoff run was magical,” Yanzetich said. “What he did in the playoffs was amazing. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that. I don’t think I’ve seen that many great pitching performances back to back.”
Playoff highlights included a 15-strikeout performance in Game 1 of the championship series against Jeff Davis, a no-hitter in Game 2 of Rockmart’s semifinal series against Callaway and another no-hitter with 13 strikeouts against Elbert County in Game 2 of the second round.
Floyd finished the season with a 10-1 record with 127 strikeouts while allowing only 11 hits and five earned runs over 61 1/3 innings for a .571 ERA.
His statistics in the postseason alone were impressive as he struck out 69 over 31 2/3 innings with a 5-0 record while allowing only three hits, one run and finishing with an ERA of 0.00.
Not taking it easy in the offseason, Floyd traveled to Oklahoma earlier this month as part of Team Georgia, joining other top junior players from across the state. Floyd competed in a series of games against players from around the country and Canada.
“Meeting new people and the baseball part of it was great,” Floyd said. “There was great competition and great people. It was one of the best events I’ve been to in a long time.”
Yanzetich says he sees no signs of Floyd slowing down as he gets ready to enter his senior season.
“He’s a great kid. He’s very humble, and that’s what makes him special,” Yanzetich said. “I’m excited about him and what his future holds for him, whether it be LSU or beyond that level. He’s very talented whether he’s hitting or pitching. I don’t think we’ve seen his ceiling yet. There’s a lot in the tank there. He works really hard at his craft in the offseason.”
Floyd is glad to be able to have the opportunity to have options open to him in the future, including playing for the Tigers in the SEC.
“It was never something I thought would happen,” Floyd said. “Of course, as a little kid you dream of going to a big SEC school, but you never know. I told my parents I wanted to go to LSU and we were like ‘ha ha ha,’ but I’m blessed to have those options. I feel like LSU is just a good fit for me.”
Floyd's teammate, Dylan Bailey, joins him on the All-Area first team. The senior catcher, who is signed with Jacksonville State, ended the season with 48 hits, 29 RBIs, 12 runs and a .393 batting average.
Behind the plate, Bailey caught 253 innings with only three passed balls and picked off six base runners. He is one of the players Yanzetich had when he first came to Rockmart more than four years ago, with the Jackets posting a 91-43 record in that time.
Another pitcher that enjoyed success this past season was Rome High’s Knox Kadum. The recent graduate, who is attending Virginia Tech on a football scholarship, racked up 87 strikeouts and set a school record for most strikeouts in a game with 17. Kadum finished with a 5-4 record with a 1.40 ERA.
Model duo Brody Pace and Brody Pearson also made the first team after leading the Blue Devils to the second round of the Class AA state playoffs just a year after winning only two games the season before.
Pace, a senior outfielder, finished with a batting average of .400 with three home runs, 34 RBIs and 24 runs scored. Pearson, a junior infielder, had a batting average of .443 with two home runs, 19 RBIs and 26 runs scored.