CARRIERE, Miss. (WLOX) - Hayden Dunhurst always dreamed of hearing his name called in the MLB Draft. On Wednesday, that dream came true, as the Colorado Rockies selected the former Pearl River Central catcher in the 37th round (1119th overall).
If all goes according to plan, he will get a chance to live out that dream again in three years.
“I’m gonna be (an Ole Miss) Rebel for three years and see how many National Championships I can win,” Dunhurst told WLOX when reached by phone.
The 5′11, 208-pound catcher entered the draft ranked nationally as MLB Pipeline’s No. 123 prospect, which led many to believe Dunhurst would be selected much higher in the draft.
A few offered, but the Ole Miss signee held firm.
“A couple of teams offered with some money high in the third round, but I was expected as a first day guy,” Dunhurst said. "I spoke with my word and drew the line in the sand. I felt and prayed about it, if I didn’t get what I wanted, then that was God’s plan for me to serve at Ole Miss. That’s where I’m headed right now, I’m gonna be a Rebel.”
Dunhurst is grateful to the Rockies organization for drafting him, but is confident he will get another crack at professional baseball in a few years.
“I’ve bet on myself my whole life, through baseball and things like that, and I’ve always succeeded," Dunhurst said. "The odds are always against you, so you just want to prove people wrong. And if you do succeed, you will come out with a lot more money and be more successful.”
As a senior at Pearl River Central, Dunhurst posted a .396 batting average to go with 38 hits and 37 RBI, the highest marks on the team in each category. As a sophomore in 2017, Dunhurst started in all 40 games in PRC’s run to the Class 5A State Championship, the first in program history.