Gene Swindoll, Gene's Page

Junior Righthander the 13th Diamond Dog Drafted in First Round

Dakota Hudson had to wait the entire first round to hear his name called. But it was the first round, just as draft analysts projected.

The Mississippi State ace was taken by St. Louis with the final selection of the regular first round, and #34 overall. He is the third Diamond Dog drafted in a first round in John Cohen’s tenure, joining righthanded pitcher Chris Stratton (2012, San Francisco) and outfielder Hunter Renfroe (2013, San Diego).

Hudson also becomes the 13th Bulldog player drafted in a first round, regular or supplemental, since the modern draft began in 1965. And, the 12th-highest of that bunch.

Now eight of the last ten first-round Dogs are pitchers.

A first-team All-SEC starter, junior righthander Hudson was projected as high as a top-ten pick much of the season. But this also was his first year as a full-time starter. After throwing just 16 total innings as a sophomore, he has already booked 106.2 innings this year. That likely took a toll towards the end as Hudson had less-effective outings in both the SEC Tournament and the Starkville Regional.

Still Hudson goes into the Starkville super regional tomorrow 9-4 with a 2.62 ERA. He is still averaging better than a strikeout-per-inning with 109 fannings so far. Per published lists, his #34 overall selection should net Hudson a signing bonus of $1,878,000.

Coach John Cohen has not committed to starting Hudson or any other regular in State’s rotation for Friday’s 5:00 game with Arizona.

Hudson was just the fourth SEC player taken in the first round, and the only Bulldog. Though, first baseman Nathaniel Lowe and family did get to celebrate.

Lowe’s younger brother Josh was drafted #13 overall by Tampa Bay. The elder brother is projected to be drafted in the first ten rounds, having turned down a 10th-round pick a year ago to attend Mississippi State.

As of this writing the supplemental first round was beginning with a total of 77 players to be picked Thursday.

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