10 College Pitchers for Dynasty Leagues

College players to watch this season!

Each and every college baseball season, there is a ton of movement on draft boards from the beginning of the year up to draft day. The 2023 pitching class was a great example of that. Chase Dollander had a historic 2022 season at Tennessee, but there were still questions surrounding him because of the suddenness of his rise. Rhett Lowder won ACC Pitcher of the Year in ’22, but his stuff did not have the “wow” factor to it. Hurston Waldrep had the ace level stuff, but the production did not match the quality of stuff. The opportunity was ripe for any of them to rise to the top, and during the 2023 season a future ace emerged. Unexpectedly, it was not one of the aforementioned arms. It was LSU product and Pirates 1st overall pick, Paul Skenes

Skenes’ story is one to remember. The transfer from Air Force came to Baton Rouge with a lot of fan fair as a potential two-way star. At Air Force, Skenes put up great pitching numbers. He had a 2.72 ERA with 126 K’s and 39 BB’s in 112.1 IP in the elevation of Colorado. This is while focusing on both hitting and pitching. During the Cape summer in 2021, Skenes was 91-93 T94 with the FB and solid offspeed stuff. All ingredients for a good pitcher, not a generational talent.

His rise to the top of the Pirates draft board, receiving comparisons to Stephen Strasburg, came quickly. Skenes’ time spent with former MLB pitching coach, and current Georgia Head Coach, Wes Johnson, while also focusing solely on pitching, allowed Skenes’ talent to take shape. The guy who stepped on the mound against Western Michigan on February 17, 2023 was 100-102 with a wipeout slider and pinpoint command. A massive shift from the player who threw on the Cape.

Each season there is a guy who pops. Sometimes they already feature elite stuff, but reign it in to throw more strikes. Others see an uptick in the quality of stuff, and use their already strong command to dominate. This year there were a lot of solid names, but nobody at the top. Through seven weeks of the season, the top of the board is taking shape. Names are starting to separate, and the top players are starting to solidify. Let’s get in to some of the pitchers in the 2024 MLB Draft class.

Be sure to head over to the Pitcher List dynasty page as well to stay up to date on the latest dynasty content.


Top 2024 College Draft Pitchers


The Cream Rises


Chase Burns- RHP, Wake Forest

2024 NCAA Stats: 43.2 IP | 2.89 ERA | 82:12 K:BB

Start number seven is always the toughest for college starters. The hype from the preseason and start of conference play has worn off, and you are starting to feel the full fatigue of a season. Those struggles were no different for Chase Burns as he got tagged for 6 ER on 4 HRs against UNC on a windy day in Winston Salem. Even in an imperfect outing, he showed the ace level stuff that has everyone talking. He settled in after some early runs to throw 6.1 IP punching out 14 Tar Heels, while walking nobody. Considering the wind was blowing straight out, on top of Wake Forest’s hitter friendly home park, giving up some home runs was going to be inevitable. The ability to strike out 14 guys and walk none shows the caliber of stuff plus command Burns is working with.

Burns utilizes a four-pitch mix, with his best pitches being his FB and SL. The FB has legit 80-grade upside due to the elite combination of velocity and shape. It is a true riding four-seam with plus carry, while sitting between 97-99 mph and topping at 102. Combine that offering with a SL that has legit depth, generates a ton of swing and miss, and tunnels well with the FB, making both play up off each other. The CH and the CB will need continued development, but the FB/SL combo would get outs in the MLB right now.

Hagen Smith- LHP, Arkansas

2024 NCAA Stats: 35.0 IP | 1.54 ERA | 72:10 K:BB

The race for the top pitcher in the class is a tight one, due in part to Hagen Smith’s historic start to the season. Since his 1 IP, 3 ER clunker on Opening Day, he has rattled off 34 IP, giving up 3 ER while striking out 70 hitters and walking 8 batters. Read that again. That’s a 0.79 ERA with an 18.5 K/9! As a starting pitcher! That is complete dominance against any competition, but when three of those outings have come in SEC play including reigning national champ LSU, and a non-conference start against current #2 Oregon State, it is all that more impressive. We are truly watching a historic stretch of dominance, in an era where offenses are scoring more than ever.

Smith’s dominance has been on the backs of 2 plus offerings. His FB/SL combo are deadly, and do a great job of keeping hitters off balance. The FB has seen an uptick this year sitting around 95. It comes from a low release height, making it hard for hitters to get on top of. He pairs that with a wicked SL that has legit 2 plane depth. As you can see below, it is a pitch that makes for some uncomfortable swings and misses. Quality of stuff has never been a question for Smith. Through 2 seasons at Arkansas, he showed the ability to generate swing and miss, but would occasionally lose the zone. That has changed this season. With only 10 walks in 35 IP, he is on pace to improve his BB rate dramatically.

Is the improved command because of the Asa Lacy Theory (a pitcher with stuff so nasty college hitters just swing at everything that pro hitters won’t) or is it actual improvement? Time will tell, but we can just enjoy the ride while we have it.


Stuff, Stuff, Stuff


Jac Caglianone – LHP, Florida

2024 Pitching Stats: 33.0 IP | 2.18 ERA | 44:22 K:BB

The most famous player in college baseball, Caglianone is known for his power, both on the mound and at the plate. Coming in to the year, there were major questions about Cags on the mound. During the ’23 season, he walked 55 hitters in 74.2 IP. But this season he has taken a slight step forward. He has shown an increased ability to command the baseball, and has been the ace of a Florida staff that has needed consistent effective outings on Sundays. He has had some outings where the command has not been great (5 walks in 5.1 against Texas A&M and 5 walks in 7 IP against LSU), but he has limited damage in those outings.

Caglianone’s best offering is a FB that sits in the upper 90s, while touching 101. He also features a cutter, as well as a SL, that both generate swing and miss. As the current record holder for HR’s in a season, he has a higher ceiling with the bat, but it is hard to ignore a left-handed arm that throws 100. I think the best opportunity for 2-way success is in a 1B/reliever role, but that would be new for MLB orgs to pursue. The consistency in throwing strikes just does not equate to a ton of success at the next level, where hitters have better approaches and are not completely overwhelmed with 100 mph FBs.

Luke Holman- RHP, LSU

2024 NCAA Stats: 39.0 IP | 1.38 ERA | 61:13 K:BB

There is a legit argument to be made that Luke Holman has been the best starting pitcher in college baseball this season. He does not have the dominant strikeout numbers of a Chase Burns or Hagen Smith, but he is not far off their pace. He is currently sitting at a 14.1 K/9, which is more than respectable and shows the quality of his stuff. Combine that swing and miss stuff with a 1.38 ERA, and you are realistically talking about one of the top arms in the draft.

Holman doesn’t light up the radar, but his best offering is his fastball. It sits more 92-94 and has flashed up to 96. It has legit carry up in the zone, and he is very comfortable using it up. One of his most impressive traits is the ability to attack the top of the zone. He lives up there, and his misses are consistently up which shows his intent to attack that part of the zone. Holman has one of the better FB commands in college baseball. He pairs that plus FB with a SL that also grades out as plus. It has legit two-plane break, creating a ton of swing and miss and tunnels well with the FB.

On top of the present stuff, there is projection to Holman’s 6 foot 4 frame. Holman is the guy in this class that I would not be shocked if his best baseball is ahead of him and he blows up in the right pro organization.

Jonathan Santucci- LHP, Duke 

2024 NCAA Stats: 35.0 IP | 2.83 ERA | 57:24 K:BB

Jonathan Santucci came out the gates this season HOT. Through three starts, he pitched 17 innings, striking out 31 while allowing 0 runs. Since his rough outing against Wake Forest in his 4th start of the year, it has not been as smooth of sailing. His command has struggled with 7 walks in 5.1 IP against NC State, then 4 walks in 5 IP against Virginia. Coming in to this season, command and durability concerns were Santucci’s only obstacles between him and a 1st round pay day. As he creeps towards a career high in innings, the command concerns are still a major question.

Santucci’s stuff is as good as any prospect in all of baseball. He combines swing and miss stuff that is also extremely difficult to barrel. There is a legit comp to Blake Snellnot necessarily from a stuff standpoint but from a combination of swing and miss stuff that is hard to hit, but has a wild streak in him. If there was any big leaguer that would go 5.1 no-hit baseball with 3 ER and 7 walks, it would be Snell. That was
Santucci’s outing against NC State. The FB is 92-96 with plus carry, and the SL is a legit weapon. So far this season he has flashed a plus CH, that would give him three plus offerings. The second half of the season will be the decider of whether he solidifies himself as a 1st rounder or not.

Brody Brecht- RHP, Iowa

2024 NCAA Stats: 31.1 IP | 4.02 ERA | 58:26 K:BB

If you turn on an Iowa game on a Friday and only catch a glimpse of Brecht you would think you were watching a future MLB stud. The peaks and valleys of Brecht production is the main road block to reaching that potential. The stuff is evident. A FB up to 101 and consistently sitting in the 97-99 range. On top of the velo, it has above average shape, making it a true 70-grade offering. You could make an argument his SL is an even better pitch. He runs it in the low 90s with legit sweep and depth to it. He also features a splitter that he lacks control with, but it has legit potential if in the strike zone.

Brecht is also a plus athlete. He spent two years a wide receiver on the Iowa football team. While that might not mean much to anyone who follows college football, it still shows elite body awareness and athleticism. Combine really good stuff with plus athleticism, and you can see why MLB scouts are enamored with the potential with Brecht’s potential. The catch? He takes command issues to another level. In 2023, he walked 61 batters in 71 IP for 7.1 BB/9. This year he has walked 26 batters in 31.1 IP, which is on pace for a slight regression from last with a 7.5 BB/9.

During the 2023 season, Brecht decided to focus solely on baseball. I would have liked to see more progression this spring, but there will be an org that takes a shot on him. How high will be the main question.

Michael Massey– RHP, Wake Forest

2024 NCAA Stats: 20.0 IP | 1.35 ERA | 32:10 K:BB

Massey was one of my potential risers coming in to this season. He was pencilled in as the Sunday starter on the nation’s best starting rotation. This is after spending all of 2023 in the back end of Wake Forest’s bullpen. For the 24 season, the plan was to stretch him out and let him carry his elite stuff as a starter, but the transition has not been exactly as planned. He has been limited by a preseason injury that has continued to linger, and limit his potential to go deep in games. If he can stay healthy in the 2nd half and carry his elite stuff through the spring, he will not have to wait long to hear his name called in July.

Massey’s stuff is some of the best in all of college baseball. Last season as a reliever he struck out 76 hitters in 41.2 IP. He struck out 48% of the batters he faced. 48%!! Combine that with a .161 BA against, and all the traits to be a top of the rotation MLB starter are there. The operation is mostly a 2 pitch mix with his FB/SL combo being deadly. Both offerings had above a 40% swing and miss rate last season. The FB is 93-97 with explosive carry up in the zone. It is a legit double plus offering, paired with a SL that also grades out as double plus. They tunnel extremely well off each other, and make for a tough at bat for hitters. He has a CH, but doesn’t use it much in college.

The comp from a 2 pitch mix standpoint for me is young Spencer Strider. We have seen starters have more success in the MLB with 2 double plus pitches, and the quality of Massey’s 2 pitches are quality enough to dominate hitters in a starting role. At worst, he is a high leverage MLB reliever, but if the right org drafts and develops him, he has as high of a ceiling as any in this class.


Potential Movers


Josh Hartle- LHP, Wake Forest

2024 NCAA Stats: 33.2 IP | 6.68 ERA | 33:10 K:BB

Josh Hartle entered the 2024 season as arguably the best starting pitcher in the draft. He was the Opening Day starter for the best rotation in college baseball that features two other names on this list. Hartle was coming off a season where he pitched 102.1 innings to a 2.81 ERA with 140 K’s and only 24 BB. This year he has struggled massively. The control has been fine, but the command and stuff have seemingly ticked down a little. Without getting in to the weeds of a control vs. command conversation, basically just the quality of his pitches in the strikezone has been worse. Throwing more hittable pitches has led to seven HR so far this season, after only giving up nine all of last year, and hitters are hitting .308 against him.

Hartle does not feature the prototypical elite stuff. The FB grades out as average sitting between 89-91, flashing up to 93, with really good sink. The command of that pitch, specifically glove side command, is what allows his repertoire to play as elite. When he commands his FB to his glove side, he is then able to work his plus cutter and plus SL off it. Those pitches tunnel extremely well with the FB, making for uncomfortable at bats for both righties and lefties.

The comp is Patrick Corbin in 2018 with the D-Backs, and 2019 with the Nationals. The glove side FB command allowed Corbin to pitch at a high level because he was able to get so many swings and misses off the back foot SL to righties, as well as off the plate to lefties. As we have seen since 2019, when the FB command slips his stuff really lacks. Hartle’s struggles are very similar to Corbin’s regression. If he can refine his command, he will return to 2023 form.

Drew Beam- RHP, Tennessee

2024 NCAA Stats- 37.2 IP | 4.06 ERA | 32:6 K:BB

Similar to Hartle, Drew Beam does not have the most dynamic stuff. He had spent the last two seasons as the Sunday starter, following up both Chase Dollander and Chase Burns. Not many arms in all of baseball would stand out following those arms. But there is an argument to be made Beam was the best of the three in terms of production. He was named Freshman of the Year in 2022 over Burns, and was the most consistent starter in 2023 as both Burns and Dollander struggled to regain their 2022 form. Beam entered the 2023 season as the unquestioned ace of the staff and the results have been inconsistent. He started off the year with 4 solid, but unspectacular outings. Then since the beginning of conference play has really struggled giving up 12 ER in 16 IP.

Entering the year as one of the safest bets, Beam features four offerings with three of them showing above average to plus potential. His fastball sits 93-95, but he has shown the ability to run it up to 98. It features plus carry, and he has good feel for command of the pitch. He combines that with an above average CB that works well with the FB. His best offspeed pitch is his CH, which grades out as plus and is a legit offering against lefties. Coming off his worst start of the year against Georgia, it will be fascinating to see how he responds. If this stretch is just a bump in the road, he will hear his name called early in July.

Trey Yesavage – RHP, East Carolina

2024 NCAA Stats: 41.1 IP | 2.18 ERA | 63:12 K:BB

I debated whether to put Yesavage on this list. On one hand, he is one of the best pitchers in the nation and every dynasty owner should know who he is. On the other hand, I have written about him twice already this season. I wrote about him as one of the top storylines after two weeks, and again in the draft risers article. It is bordering on creepy at this point. For those who did not read the excerpts on Yesavage, I will provide a cliff notes version.

Yesavage features a four-pitch mix. The FB runs up to 97 with legit carry up in the zone. His best offspeed offering is a split that moves like a lefty slider. It had late action, diving downward. It is a weapon to both righties and lefties. He also has a SL that he throws harder in the 87-89 range and has a ton of bite too it. Combine that with a 12/6 CB that he can land for strikes. He features all those offerings with above average command. Yesavage is a player who in the right organization can see his stock rise quickly. In that scenario he would move quickly through the MiLB.

Photos by Wake Forest, University of Arkansas and Duke University Athletics | Adapted by Carlos Leano

2 responses to “10 College Pitchers for Dynasty Leagues”

  1. CJ says:

    Is Jurrangelo Cijntje close to making this list? Throwing mid-90s with both left and right hand would seem to boost his value unless it’s not expected to transition well to the majors.

    • Trevor Powers says:

      Sorry for the late response, but yes he is very close to making this list. He is finally seeing time as a starter and being stretched out and the stuff has held. At first I felt like it was just a good story of a pitcher who could throw both ways, but now it seems attainable.

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