Peyton Grant’s baseball career is going to the next level.
The 2019 Scottsboro High School graduate will continue his career at Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tennessee. Cumberland is an NAIA school that plays in the Mid-South Conference. The Phoenix finished second in the MSC Tournament last month.
“(Scottsboro) Coach (Blake) Talley talked to their coach I went up there for a visit and loved it,” Grant said. “It’s a good campus, has a home feel to it. I met the coaches; they’re really nice. They’re all former (college) players. I just really felt at home.”
Grant is the fourth Scottsboro senior to sign to play collegiately. Christian Herberholz is headed to Tennessee Tech, Reed Latimer to Montevallo and Ethan Clark to Bevil State.
Grant was a three-year starter for the Wildcats. He finished his senior season with .367 batting average and a .454 on-base percentage. He collected 33 hits in 90 at-bats, including eight doubles, one triple and one home run. He scored 22 runs, recorded 16 RBIs, drew seven walks and was hit by a pitch nine times. Grant also had a team-leading 13 stolen bases. As a junior, Grant batted .300 and had an on-base percentage of .440 to go with 24 hits, five doubles, one triple, 13 RBIs and 18 runs scored. He drew seven walks and was hit by a pitch 13 times. As a sophomore, Grant had 16 hits, four doubles, seven RBIs, scored 13 runs, drew five walks and was hit by a pitch five times.
Grant was also a starting defensive back for the Scottsboro football team the past two seasons, recording 94 tackles, three interceptions, nine pass break-ups, three interceptions and three fumble recoveries.
Grant showed off his baseball versatility this season by moving from catcher to second base.
“We were just trying to get the most hitters we could in the lineup and it just fit best for us,” said Grant, who will play catcher at Cumberland, adding that the move wasn’t a difficult transition. “Whatever (position) you’re playing at practice you’re usually fielding grounders, so it just kind of came normal to me.”
Grant said he cherishes his time with the Scottsboro baseball program.
“It helped me grow as a baseball player and a person,” he said. “I had a lot of great teammates, (made) a lot of great memories.”
Scottsboro finished 17-10 this spring and won the program’s first area championship in 12 years.
“It really meant a lot to us (seniors), especially because it was Coach Talley’s first year and he really wants to get the program turned around,” Grant said. “I think we left it headed in the right direction and it’s only going to get better.”
Grant plans to major in education and coach baseball once his playing career is complete. For now, he’s looking forward to wearing the Cumberland uniform.
“I’m really excited about the chance to play (collegiately),” he said. “(Cumberland is) a really good baseball program.”