MLB4: Cal Poly’s Dollard Dazzles In Season OpenerAt The Ballpark
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Cal Poly junior righthanded pitcher Taylor Dollard had already proven himself as one of the better relievers on the West Coast. Now, it appears he’s ready to assert himself as one of the region’s best starting pitchers, too, as he put together a dazzling performance in a 5-0 win over Connecticut to begin the 2020 campaign.
Dollard earned a strong reputation as a key reliever over the past two seasons. As a freshman for the Mustangs, he tallied a 2.43 ERA in 19 appearances, while doing much of the same last season with a 2.89 ERA in 19 appearances. He certainly wanted to be a starting pitcher, but at the time, his best spot was in the bullpen with guys like ace Bobby Ay leading the weekend rotation.
Ay had a solid 2019 campaign and the Mustangs entered the 2020 season in need of a new staff ace with the veteran hurler departed. They turned to Dollard Friday afternoon in the series opener against the Huskies.
If his first start of the season is any indication of what to expect the rest of the season, the Mustangs could be in for a real treat with Dollard as the Friday night starter. He was in command throughout and showed the poise you want in an ace pitcher.
“From a mindset standpoint, he was fine,” Cal Poly head coach Larry Lee said. “We went primarily fastball, slider today, and we probably had the advantage because we’ve had great weather and haven’t missed any days on the field. He’s needed to develop his changeup and give us something when he faces lefthanded hitters. But he had two hits allowed in seven innings and kept his pitch count under 100 – at 93. His velocity was really nice, too. He’s really taken a big step forward.”
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