MAJORING ON THE MINORS: TOP 30 PROSPECTS – DOMINIC SMITH - VOL.4 – Tom Brennan
By now if you read my first three Top Prospects articles, you know that I approach it a bit differently - 2 lists:
· A top 20 list of guys who are closing in on the big leagues. Guys who could help us in the near future or be trade bait.
· A top 10 list of lower minors guys who likely won’t show up until 2017 or later.
I start with the Top 10 List of Down-The-Road Mets Prospects.
I further sub-divided and ranked the 10 into the top 5 and the next 5.
My Top 5 from I refer to as my GUPPY SQUADRON LEADERS. Guppies headed towards possible future stardom. Budding rock stars.
Here’s my Guppy Squadron Leader List So Far:
# 1 - Marcos Molina
#2 – Michael Conforto
#3 – Amed Rosario
Today, add to that list #4:
A number of commentators were disturbed at Mr. Smith only having a single dinger in 2014 on Savannah. You know, the glass half empty folks.
First, he played a full 2014 season in mid-A Savannah, in a season where he only turned 19 in mid-June. To me that is very impressive.
Secondly, his 2014 stats were suppressed by a very slow (11 for 69) start to the season in April, understandable since he skipped Brooklyn and was sent straight to mid-A ball. Afterwards, he hit .290 in 392 at bats with 28 extra base hits. Pretty sweet. And only 77 Ks in 126 games. And a .360 on base % career to date.
Third, Savannah is brutal in terms of hitting the long ball. I understand it is ranked the worst. If he is not banging a bunch of long balls in 2016, when he’ll turn 21 mid-season, I’ll start to worry.
Let's bring two players to mind when considering Smith's single homer 2014 and how it might project going forward. Cesar Puello hit a single homer in his full season in Savannah in 2010 at age 19, and hit 16 in 91 games in Binghamton in 2013. And Ike Davis took over 300 at bats to record his first pro dinger, and he was a few years older to boot. His power picked up a tad after that.
Back to Smith. I would not be surprised to see Smitty hit .300 in St Lucie with 10-15 HRs and a bunch of doubles in 2015. I'd see him with similar average and 15-20 homers in 2016 in AA, .300 with 20-25 homers in AAA in 2017 and a late season call up to Citi in 2017. In the meantime, Duda and/or Michael Cuddyer (or even Jayce Boyd, were Duda to get hurt) will hold down the fort pending Smith's debut.
Smith’s glove has already been referenced by many as being elite at 1B. He may well be a Met starting 1B for years once he arrives. Give him time, and enjoy the ride, folks.
So that is pick # 4, and Vol. 4. Who will be # 5? Watch out for my next article.