STARKVILLE – Having redshirted in 2013, Cody Brown had to wait an extra year for his childhood dream of playing college baseball to come true.
But Brown was finally able to realize that goal on opening weekend this past spring starting two games for Mississippi State against Western Carolina, drawing five walks and collecting an RBI triple for his first collegiate hit.
“It was awesome and something special,” Brown said. “It’s always been a dream to play college baseball. Once I finally got to step back out there on the field with my teammates that I’d been working with for so long, it was a great moment. I finally realized that I was here living my dream.”
Brown was one of only a handful of 2012 signees that were forced to redshirt while the Diamond Dogs made their run through the 2013 College World Series to finish as the national runners-up.
“Last year with the redshirt and the team going to Omaha, it was hard to watch from the sidelines,” Brown said. “But I just used that time to get better and really improve myself once I got a chance to get out there.”
The 5-foot-10, 184-pound outfielder had plenty of opportunities as a redshirt freshman appearing in 47 games, including 30 starts. Brown hit .248 with three doubles, two triples, two home runs, 16 RBI and five stolen bases.
Both of Brown’s homers came during SEC play including his first on April 24 against Texas A&M at home.
“Dudy Noble is a big field and I didn’t know if I could get one out of here,” Brown said. “I just kind of ran into it.”
Brown was a four-year starter at Biloxi High School where he batted .324 with five doubles, two triples, two home runs and 21 steals as a senior earning All-State honors by ESPNHS. He was a three-time All-District selection, Dandy Dozen member and also lettered in football and soccer for the Indians.
But Brown quickly realized there would be an adjustment period once he arrived at MSU.
“It’s a different ballgame here,” Brown said. “It’s a lot faster pace. Taking the year off with the redshirt really gave me time to understand the concepts that this program brings and what this program brings. Basically I had a year to catch up and get better.”
Brown had offers from LSU, South Alabama, Samford and several Mississippi junior colleges and thoroughly enjoyed the recruiting process. But once he took his visit to Starkville there was no question where he wanted to go.
“When I took my visit (to MSU), everyone felt more like my friends even before I really knew them,” Brown said. “I just really liked the atmosphere – the team, the program and the whole campus. I felt like it was a really good fit for me to be here.”
Brown is spending the summer in Maryland playing in the Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League for the Bethesda Big Train. In eight games, he is 5-for-25 with a run batted in and four stolen bases.