Garrett Crochet became the second-highest drafted Tennessee pitcher of all-time on Wednesday night when the Chicago White Sox decided to take the southpaw No. 11 overall in the first round of the 2020 MLB Draft.
Crochet becomes the highest drafted left-handed pitcher in the history of the program and is the seventh first round pick that Tennessee pitching coach Frank Anderson has coached during his coaching career.
The Ocean Springs, Mississippi native was a Baseball America Preseason First Team All-American and Perfect Game Preseason Third Team All-American entering the 2020 season. Crochet missed the first three weeks of the season due to shoulder soreness, however, and was only able to make one start after the season was canceled following 17 games due to COVID-19.
Crochet is most known for his high-velocity fastball. He was sitting comfortably at 96-100 MPH as a junior after arriving on campus as a freshman throwing in the mid-80’s. His 82-85 MPH slider has exceptional break and consistently gets hitters out. Crochet also throws a changeup that will serve as a plus pitch at the next level.
At 6-foot-6, Crochet was ranked as the No. 11 overall draft prospect by Baseball America, No. 10 overall by MLB.com, and No. 16 overall by D1Baseball.com for 2020 following a strong 2019 campaign. As a sophomore, Crochet made 18 appearances and six starts for the Vols. He finished the year with five wins, which was third-most on the team, and was second on the team with 81 strikeouts.
Crochet broke his jaw during the last week of the season against Ole Miss after being hit by a line drive. Two weeks later, he logged 2.1 scoreless innings with four strikeouts to help lead the Vols to their first NCAA Tournament win since 2005.
He made 16 appearances and started 11 games as a true freshman in 2018. Crochet finished the year tied for second on the team with five wins and was also second on the team with 62 strikeouts, which ranks fifth in program history for strikeouts by a freshman in a single season.
Crochet was drafted in the 34th round by the Milwaukee Brewers in 2017 coming out of high school, but instead chose to attend Tennessee over Texas and Tulane. He was one of head coach Tony Vitello’s first commits and is now the first high school signee to be drafted during the Vitello era.