Panthers senior working to improve two-seam fastball
FARMINGTON — Chase Silseth is demonstrating he can go the distance in big games on the mound.
The Piedra Vista pitcher has good command while attacking the strike zone and maintains calm in times of duress, all while typically throwing at least five innings in any given start.
Now, he will get ready for an even bigger stage pitching for the University of Tennessee, and NCAA Division I school, after signing a Letter of Intent with the Volunteers today.
"You dream about just playing at the highest level in college," Silseth said. "The place is amazing. I went there a couple weeks ago, and it's just an experience of a lifetime. It's beautiful there, and the coaching staff is just amazing there."
Silseth went 6-2 in 10 starts for the Panthers in 2017, averaging a little less than six innings per outing.
Silseth also made his Connie Mack World Series debut in August, starting one game for the Midland Redskins and frequently attacking the inner part of the plate with his two-seam fastball. He logged 5 2/3 innings that afternoon and picked up the win as the Redskins went on to win the 2017 Connie Mack World Series title.
Silseth's experiences with the Redskins helped him become even more battle tested entering the collegiate level.
"They've seen some of the top people in the nation. I think I'm ready," Silseth said.
Silseth said his approach with each batter is to get the first strike right away, which, in turn, helps him lower his pitch count and prolong his outings.
"The less pitches you throw, the more you can go," Silseth said.
Silseth said he's still developing his two-seam fastball entering his senior season at PV. Silseth also said his two go-to pitches, the four-seam fastball and the plus changeup, will ensure he performs well for the Volunteers.
"When I can get that (plus changeup) working, that keeps hitters off-balance," Silseth said.
Silseth is aware that opponents will come after him during his senior season this spring.
"When you hear about someone signing in DI and (Southeast Conference) baseball, yeah, you're going to have a target on your back," Silseth said.
Matt Hollinshead covers sports for the Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577.