The 2023 MLB Draft is almost four months away, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have any mock drafts yet. Baseball America has their first mock for the 2023 MLB Draft out, and they are currently projecting the Rangers going with a college righthanded pitcher for the third year in a row.
The Rangers, who have the #4 overall pick thanks to the new lottery system that was implemented, take University of Tennessee righthanded pitcher Chase Dollander in this initial BA mock. Dollander is considered arguably the top arm in this year’s draft, and is currently second on the BA board, behind LSU outfielder Dylan Crews.
Dollander is an interesting story, having gone undrafted in 2020 out of high school (though, it should be noted, in what was just a five round draft) and pitching for Georgia Southern as a freshman. He transferred to Tennessee and was electric lsat year, putting up a 2.39 ERA in 79 innings with 108 Ks agaiinst 13 walks. Dollander has made four starts so far this season, allowing six runs in 22 innings — though with three home runs allowed, almost half as many as he allowed all last year — with 41 Ks against 5 walks.
It is way, way too early to put much weight on mock drafts at this point, of course. Nonetheless, its worth taking a look at to get a sense for what things are looking at now, knowing that a ton can change over the next few months.