Athlete of the Week: Dylan Ray


Meet Dylan Ray, a junior that plays on the varsity baseball team. Just recently Ray got out of ACL surgery and was able to get a grand slam at the Hoover Met. His mother, LaJeanna Ray posted on Twitter, “A week after being cleared by the doc to return to baseball from ACL surgery, @DylanRay__ shows it was only a bump in the road! Grand Slam!!!!” He was also featured under the high school sports section on which stated, “ Dylan Ray’s grand slam capped a six-run sixth inning as Bob Jones defeated Winder-Barrow (Ga.) 9-8 in the Perfect Game Showcase at the Hoover Met. (…) He finished 2-for-4 with five RBIs. The grand slam was Ray’s first homer of the season; he hit 13 last season.”

Ray started playing baseball when he was only four years old, and since then, his love for the sport has only grown. For most of his life, he played as a shortstop, until a few years ago, when he started playing third base. Because he has been in the sport for so long, baseball hadn’t made much of a difference in his life, saying “I can’t remember a time in my life when baseball wasn’t involved.” Now, his life revolves around this sport, and it has impacted him greatly with new opportunities and people. “I have made relationships that will last forever. I have traveled all over the country playing baseball. It’s been awesome.” As he continues in his career, more doors are opened for his future.

Now, Ray is committed to playing at the University of Alabama, but he doesn’t plan to stop there. “My biggest motivation is playing to make it to the major leagues one day,” Ray explained. “This is one of my dreams I have been pursuing for a long time and that’s what I have been working towards all my life.” Keeping his goals in mind, however, isn’t the only thing that allowed Ray to be where he is today. “My family and teammates have really inspired me throughout my career,” he said, but his support doesn’t end there. “Having D1 teammates to really push you to be better every day is such a blessing. We are in constant competition to see who can be the best, and that’s why I love this team.” This support system encouraged him to never give up, even when times seemed challenging.

Injuries are something that all athletes go through, but how one handles them has a huge effect on the outcome. During the second football game of the season, Ray tore his ACL, potentially taking him out of the sport for the rest of this season. His mindset towards his injury let him be able to play this season, and even get a grand slam a week after he was cleared. “Thanks to God, great doctors, and support from loved ones, I was able to bounce back for the first game of the season.” This quick recovery just shows how much potential is in this great athlete, and hopefully, we will see Dylan Ray playing baseball on national television in the future!