TN High School Team Preview: Unicoi County Blue Devils

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The 2023 high school baseball season is quickly approaching and as usual, excitement abounds throughout the state. Players and coaches have been working in preparation for the upcoming season and, as is the case each year, there are some very talented players and teams across Tennessee.

Teams across the state have goals and aspirations to finish their seasons in Murfreesboro at The Spring Fling as they compete for a state championship, but there is plenty of work to be done before that becomes reality. We hope to familiarize our readers with many of the teams across the state as we preview individual teams across Tennessee. We will take you right up to first pitch this season with these team previews and by continuing other pieces of content covering the Volunteer State.

Please keep checking back throughout the season as we will be your one-stop shop for everything related to high school baseball across the state. Each week we will be releasing our players of the week, updating the Top 10 in each TSSAA classification as well as a Power 25. 

*Please note that all information is based on team preview questionnaires that were sent out and returned by the participating high school coaches.


High School Name: Unicoi County High School 

Coach’s Name: Chad Gillis 

Team Twitter Handle: @baseball_unicoi

Classification: AAA 

2022 Record: 17-15

District + Region Number: District 1 + Region 1 

No. of Returning Positional Starters:

No. of Returning Pitchers:

Team Strengths: Pitching & Defense

Top Returning Players:

Team Outlook:

The Blue Devils made a nice run to sub-state in 2021 while capturing the district tourney title in the process. Last season, they had to replace some key players, but put together a respectful season as they lost in the district tourney to finish 17-15. They’ll return a veteran bunch and lean on their pitching and defense this year. ‘23 SS/RHP Braden Hendrickson has anchored the infield and hit leadoff his entire HS career while also doubling as the no.2 on the mound. ‘23 C Valentin Batrez is a lefty hitting catcher that can do damage in the middle of the lineup. ‘23 RHP/1B Lucas Slagle returns in his ace role and provides another big bat in the order. ‘24 3B/RHP Chris Chavez will handle the hot corner and throw significant innings on the mound. ‘24 OF Nicky Satterly provides a burst of speed and will man CF for the Blue Devils again this year. ‘23 RHP/OF Alex Green returns for his final season and will throw key innings while providing depth in the outfield. Unicoi will be matched up with two state tourney teams from last year, Tennessee and Sullivan East, plus a competitive Elizabethton bunch. They’ll certainly have the pieces to make another postseason run, but the district tourney has always shown to be a battle with two great clubs advancing to regions.


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