With the ninth overall pick in the 2023 MLB First-Year Player Draft, the Colorado Rockies have selected right-handed pitcher Chase Dollander from the University of Tennessee.
The 21-year old pitcher won SEC pitcher of the year in 2022 and entered 2023 as a consensus top arm in this year’s draft. In 2022 he made 14 starts in 16 appearances for the Vols with an ERA of 2.39 in 79 innings, striking out 108 batters to just 13 walks.
Dollander wasn’t as sharp in 2023 with an ERA of 4.75 in 17 starts and 89 innings. He had some command issues that caused him to more than double his walk total to 30 and he gave up 14 home runs. However, his strikeout ability remained elite with 120 on the season.
Dollander is considered one of the best collegiate pitchers in this year’s draft and comes equipped with a four pitch mix. The highlight of his arsenal is a 70-grade for seam fastball with both velocity and movement that ranges between 95-97 MPH and can reach 99 MPH. His secondary pitch is a mid-80s sweeping slider that can reach 91 MPH. Dollander also throws a curveball and a changeup that are still developing.
Dollander is the highest drafted Tennessee Volunteer since 2016 and he joins former teammate Jordan Beck in the Rockies farm system.