Signs with MLB Phillies
CROSBY – Blane and Carol Hearn raised a son who played baseball since he was four years old.
The couple sat with this reporter at Blane’s shop, where he was reconditioning a truck from the 1940s and making a fantastic queen sized bed from vintage truck parts, complete with lights and radio. He showed me what he was making for his customer as I made my way through a menagerie of artisan life-like, taxidermic crafted deer heads.
“I was concerned to see if he wanted to keep living baseball after college.” said Blane. “Hunter answered, ‘I can do this, dad.’ So, I knew he would get after it.”
Hunter signed with Philadelphia Phillies in the 26th round of the Major League Baseball draft on June 5. That means he gets to try professional baseball and is in Florida training currently. The training isn’t a walk in the park; it is the same workout as U.S. Navy Seals endure for fitness training. The details of what his freshman year in the big leagues will be are still open, although he has a great history as a catcher. The minor’s papers only say “outfield.” We are told that is just generic.
Hunter is a graduate of Crosby High School and Sam Houston State University with a degree in Construction Science and Management with a minor in General Business Administration. Hunter continues to hold baseball records at both his former schools. His senior year, the Cougars advanced to Regional Semifinals, having won more matches than any year previous. He was All-District his last three years at Crosby and was second team 5A All-State catcher his senior year. He lettered in football, track and baseball. Under coach Wiggins, Hunter was named first team all state and second team all state, helping the team to district championship, hitting .440 with 12 doubles, one triple, four home runs and 34 RBIs as a senior.
Hunter’s Sam Houston State Record is profound. He had 245 hits there, sixth place for all time hitters. In his senior year, he hit 76 times and held an average of .336 batting. In the final nine games of his Bearkat senior year, Hunter had 16 hits. In May at the close of his senior season, Hunter worked the cycle to push his team to an 11-5 win over rival Northwestern State. He had nine RBIs in the first four games of the year. He pounded a two run home run at Minute Maid Park, yielding the Bearkats a 7-6 comeback win over Vanderbilt U., then seeded 12th in the nation.
Carol teaches kids dance, confidence and poise.
“As parents, Blane and I know how much he will miss playing for Sam Houston, but he is excited to start this new journey. Coach Deggs’ Bearkat program at Sam Houston taught him to be comfortable being uncomfortable and to outwork the hardest worker on the field. Hunter was blessed with the best coaches from age 3 to 22. Crosby’s Little League program gave him his start at age 3, and he hasn’t stopped working since. Playing sports for Crosby Middle/High School are some of his most cherished memories. Baseball has brought so many wonderful people into our lives. We were blown away with all the community support throughout his high school and college years. There is no doubt he is going to give it his all to make Crosby proud.”
According to Blane, “Hunter started all four years at Sam Houston.” In fact, early in his freshman year, he played 47 games with 28 starts in right field, seven in left and four as designated hitter, scoring second on the team for sacrifice flies (3) and fifth place slugging. He was omnipresent as a senior.
It got noticed. In both of the final weeks, he was Southland Conference Hitter.