2015 Pitman graduate Coleton Horner is now a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks organization after his contract was purchased by the club on June 6. Horner has since been assigned to the Diamondbacks’ Arizona Complex League team.
Prior to joining the Arizona organization, Horner was playing for the Ogden Raptors of the Pioneer League, which is an independent league. This was his third season playing independent ball after going undrafted in the 2019 MLB Draft out of the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.
“It happened pretty quick,” Horner said. “Before we got on the bus to Boise, [my coach] mentioned to me that there could be an opportunity waiting for me if I kept playing well. By the time we were ready to take batting practice, he pulled me out the lineup and told me that they signed me.”
Even though this marks Horner’s first opportunity in a professional organization, he made sure to keep his emotions in check as he realizes that the ultimate goal of breaking into the big leagues remains.
“I didn't have this overwhelming rush of emotions. It was relatively calm,” he said. “Obviously I was being congratulated by my teammates, which made me feel really great, but I just thought, ‘Well now real work starts. Now it's time to see how I can really go.’”
Horner explained that, since his parents were at work, he was unable to reach them immediately after the news broke. Because of this, they ended finding out via social media, sending shockwaves of emotion amongst his family and friends.
“Mom and grandma and grandparents were pretty emotional,” said his father, Bill. “We helped him in the journey, but we didn't go workout every day and we didn't go take swings every day. He's always had to prove himself and he has the drive. It was exciting and this is just him meeting his next step of goals. Hopefully he continues and completes his goals in this journey.”
Horner has been at the Arizona Complex League for nearly two weeks now. Through five games, he is batting .500 in 17 plate appearances and three RBI.
“Coming up really lit a fire in me,” Horner said. “It really just showed that if I keep doing what I do, there's a real chance that I could make it [to the MLB]. I'm just taking it day by day, trusting the process and just playing my game and hope things fall in the right place.”