Looking at Baseball America's listing of Mets top 30 prospects, the one surprising name to me was Kevin Smith at # 10.  

No, not the New Hampshire Fisher Cats SS of the same name.  The Mets guy - this, after all, is a Mets article.

The Mets' Kevin Smith is a 6'5", 200+ lefty (being a lefty myself, I love lefties), who was drafted in the 7th round of the 2018 draft, after going undrafted out of high school, who turned 22 in mid-May.

In 2018, with the Brooklyn Cyclones, he was brilliant: 4-1, 0.76 ERA, 0.76 WHIP, 28 Ks in 23.2 IP.

In 2019, he skipped right over Columbia to St Lucie, and in 17 starts, went 5-5, 3.05 ERA, and a 1.25 WHIP, fanning a fine 102 batters in 85.2 IP.  He just got promoted to AA, where his first start totaled 5.2 IP with 3 hits and 2 earned runs allowed.

Wow - he sure has pitched good as a Mets minor leaguer.  

Better than he did in his years in college, frankly.

Some guys just improve.

He throws with a three quarters arm slot, making him tough on lefties.  Lefty hitters hit .217 against him while pitching for St Lucie in 2019, while righties hit .274.  Lefties went just 2 for 24 against him in 2018.
His fastball reportedly sits in the 90-94 MPH range, with a strong slider and good change.
Now that he is up to AA, and especially as quickly as he has gotten there, it should get real interesting for Smith.  AA and AAA are significantly greater challenges for pitchers like Kevin Smith.

Previously "Spotlighted" in an article on this site, Tommy Wilson, drafted 12 rounds behind Smith in the 19th round last year, actually beat Smith to AA.  Wilson had some rough outings in AA, but his last 2 outings were stellar - both being 6 inning, 2 hit, 0 earned run outings.  

My guess is Kevin Smith will quickly reach similar success in AA ball.

Another lefty, to go along with Messrs. Kay, Peterson, and Szapucki?  Wow. I feel good having 4 such lefties in the fold, and their presence should bode well for Mets pitching quality in future seasons.

While Smith has only been a starter this season, Smith's success against lefties could in my view lead to him being a lefty pen arm for the Mets as early as 2020.

Then again, maybe he'll prove to be the next Madison Bumgarner.   That wouldn't be such a bad thing, huh?


Reese Kaplan said...

He's a Met. How about the next Jon Matlack?

Tom Brennan said...

Good point. Matlack would sure work for me, Reese.

Tom Brennan said...

Matlack was a classic Met - a stellar 2.88 career Mets ERA in 200 starts - and just 82-81 due to mediocre offensive support, a Mets trademark.

Tom Brennan said...

Matlack ended up 125-126, 3.18 in his career. A contemporary who had a career 3.29 ERA? Ron Guidry, but 170-91. Ahh, the joys of being a Met.

Gary Seagren said...

Having our own "Madbum" would be great and I guess this next week will be interesting to say the least. It seems we're willing to float anyone's name out there but to have any real success on the trade front BVW needs to do something we Met fans are not used to seeing: an aggressive and decisive GM making smart choices and not pretending that were a contending team for a WC this year.

Reese Kaplan said...

That topic, Gary, is what my column tomorrow is all about.

Tom Brennan said...

Gary, we'll see. Let's hope they avoid John's Bargain Store mentality (do you remember that store?)

Mack Ade said...

Smith is sneaky good,

Could surprise us like Jake did

John From Albany said...

Saw Kevin pitch last year for Brooklyn and was impressed. Since he only pitched the first inning of a start, was thinking they were bringing him along slowley.

Tom Brennan said...

John, Kevin Smith is not moving slowly any longer.

Dave Schulps said...

And another fine outing today. Gave up one run on 2 hits in 5+ innings, with 8 Ks and 2 BBs. Bravo.

Tom Brennan said...