Mack - 2015 Prospect List - #13 – 1B – Dominic Smith


My rankings is solely subjective and based on nothing more than what is in my head at time I’m writing this. I’ve followed the Mets minor league players for many years and I feel I can recognize talent at various levels of their development. What I have failed at is how to determine when this talent seems to diminish. It’s amazing how many first round picks never make it in this game.

I’m old school, so you won’t seem much SABR-discussion here, I do research and, when I find a good quote or two, I’ll add them to my analysis, but, like I said in the beginning of this post, most of this us subjective.

Let’s get started.

#13 – 1B – Dominic Smith – 19-years old – 6-0, 185 – L/L

                       Drafted 1st Round 2013 – Junipero Serra HS (CA)

                       2013 – K/Port – GCL:  173-AB, .301/.398/.439/837, 3-HR, 26-RBI

                       2014 – Sav -  461-AB, .271/.344/.338/683, 1-HR, 44-RBI

What they said about Smith at the time of his draft –

From Keith Law: - Smith is one of the best pure hitters in the high school class, showing a smooth left-handed swing with power and a plus glove at first base. When he keeps his weight back, his swing is outstanding, with great balance through contact and good hip rotation to generate power from his legs. He has quick, strong wrists, with a projectable body that should lead to very hard contact when he fills out in three or four years. He can drift forward at the plate too early, getting his weight out over his front side before he's started his hands, losing power and struggling to control the bat head behind him. His stride is long and early, which may be part of the reason for his trouble staying back but is an easy fix in pro ball. Smith is an excellent defender at first with a 70 arm, hitting 92 off the mound the one time I saw him pitch, albeit with a rough delivery. He doesn't show a lot of energy on the field, which has positive aspects (he's a confident, relaxed hitter) and negative ones (some scouts have questioned the effort level, myself included), but there are no serious concerns about his makeup. In this draft, with so few potential impact bats, he's a clear top 20 talent.

Adam Rubin ‏@AdamRubinESPN - Paul DePodesta said Smith is "special defender" at first base, so no intention to move him. But he can play right field, too.

Churchill - Smith offers a strong hit tool and future power and the Mets clearly went best player rather than need or an attempt to save a significant amount of cash under MLB's recommended bonus for later picks. This could also signify the club's long-term plans at the big-league level, possibly including an active free-agent winter.

greg schaum greg schaum ‏ @ Greg_Schaum - Dom Smith might end up being the best bat In this draft. High character guy who can swing it, pick it, and throw it.

Aaron Fitt Aaron Fitt ‏ @ aaronfitt - Every SoCal scout I know loves Dominic Smith -- really special makeup, special swing, plus defender. # Mets fans will love him.

Jessica Quiroli Jessica Quiroli ‏ - 1B Dominic Smith was all over the place on draft boards. Awesome pick for the Mets. # MLBDraft

John Manuel John Manuel ‏ @ johnmanuelba - Had a scout comp Dom Smith to Adrian Gonzalez. that would be pretty sweet value at No. 11 # Mets # mlbdraft

Jim Callis Jim Callis ‏ @ jimcallisBA - As you just heard on @ MLBNetwork, I think # Mets got a very nice bat at 11 in Dominic Smith. # mlbdraft

JIM BOWDEN ‏ @ JimBowdenESPNxm - Dominick Smith bat reminds me of David Ortiz when he was a kid and his defense reminds me of Adrian Gonzalez

Well, as you can read, everybody loved this kid on draft day and I can tell you after meeting him, he will be a big fan favorite. This guy has a more positive personality than Curtis Granderson. He started wonderfully in 2013, hitting over .300 for K-Port/GCL after the draft.

He did only one thing wrong in 2014 and it wasn’t his fault. He played the entire full season for Savannah in a terrible humid climate, especially in July-August. He hit .320 in May, .301 in June, and .292 in July, but ‘the grind’ caught up .217 in August.
Folks, this is a real time bat and he’s only 19-years old.

Outlook –

The sky’s the limit.

My guess is he’s bulking up in the off-season and will open the season for St. Lucie.
The slow road would get him to Queens in 2008 and it will be the Mets decision it they someday replace a 30+ home run hitter like Lucas Duda with a Keith Hernandez-type first baseman like Smith looks to be.

Sounds like a win-win to me. 


Jeff Roland said...

Does Dom have a time machine to get to queens in 2008?

Thomas Brennan said...

15 homers or more in 2015. that's my call.

Anonymous said...

Ah, the always optimistic outlook of this blog.

It is interesting how you are including all of the comments said about Dom Smith when he was drafted, and none of the comments said about him more recently where he was heavily criticized by scouts for gaining what one scout referred to as the "freshman 15".

It was also said by scouts that he looks slow, and has a heavy lower body.

If you research what scouts said about him during and after 2014, it wasn't positive.

Lew Rhodes said...

MLB just ranked him the #4 1b prospect in all of baseball - so it isn't just Mack who is high on him

Charles said...

I don't think he'll hit 15 homers until at least 2016. I'd be happy with 10 if he bats .320.

The problem is that if he doesn't hit for power he needs to be a very special bat that plays golf glove defense like Keith Hernandez.

There have been plenty of players that were only 6 foot and hit homers and since this kid's hit tool is special, he has the chance.

Man, wouldn't it be something if in 2017 the Mets have Conforto, Nimmo, Smith, and Rosario as regulars? I'm confident that Nimmo and Conforto will work out, and very hopeful on Rosario.

Smith is the one I really need to see have a excellent year.

Charles said...

Very true. Tell you what, it would have been very nice to see Smith in Barwis' gym right now getting his ass in shape.

Maybe he is...I haven't heard his name mentioned though. If Smith isn't much of a worker and starts packing on a Sophomore 60, maybe we'll have ourselves our own Prince Fielder.

eraff said...

Smith was a Strange pick---a 17 year old without the athletic ability or upside to project as anything but a First Baseman. Apparently, he has no positional flexibility. He'll need to be an impact player just to Make a Big League Career---then again, a guy drafted that high is never considered a success unless he becomes a sustained starter.

I don't think you can fail him if he doesn;t provide STATS this year. He's in a Sink-Swim Zone that was usually reserved for Omar Draftees. He is, AGAIN, 2-3 years younger than the league--- and the Florida State League is PACKED with Talented 21-23 year old College Pitchers.

If Smith does "somehwhat better" than his Savanah season, he will be toeing success. I'm interested in two things:
1. Does he remain competitive as a hitter---working ab's and identifying pitches.
2. Can he advance his spray chart to include more Gaps and Pulls...More Line Drives.

If that happens, he'll be scuffling with edges on more power...more doubles and maybe a few Homers. If that happens, you can then circle 2016 as his MOVE year....at AA.

Mack Ade said...

Charles -

Let's hold up on Smith for a second.

He was completely used up by September, his first full season in organized ball. And, BTW, EVERY Mets minor league player is given a set of instructions on a plan to follow in the off season.

There's no rush on this kid, but I do want to see more of a 'pop' production in 2015... any kind of extra based hits would be fine by me

Christopher Soto said...

If I'm not mistake.....Smith was planning on attending the IMG Academy and working out with some major leaguers like Andrew McCutchen

Charles said...

So their first rounders can't make use of their famous strength and conditioning coach? Seems to me that this front office loves when their young players show initiative and take part of this program.

If I'm Smith and i heard that scouts thought I was dogging it, I'd probably make great use of the fitness program that's getting a ton of coverage in the NY media. Especially if I get to work out with the captain of the franchise.

Charles said...

Like I said Chris, I didn't know one way or the other. I hope that's true. Nimmo worked out there and it was great for him.

Anonymous said...

Confirmed.....Dom Smith has actually been spending the offseason at the Barwis training facility with the major leaguers.

Mack's Mets © 2012