New York Mets minor league pitcher Kevin Smith is a left-handed prospect currently on the rise.
This year’s New York Mets minor league news hasn’t had any major story about a player making a tremendous rise. Last year, we got to see Jeff McNeil burst onto the scene. Equally as important, Pete Alonso rose up through the minor leagues with power we have never seen from a Mets player before.
The current Mets minor league system still includes some talented players. One of them is left-handed pitcher Kevin Smith who will undoubtedly catch your eye if only for sharing a namesake with the comedic director who is known for playing Silent Bob.
Unlike Smith of Hollywood fame, this one’s best-known character isn’t so quiet. Now in his second professional season, we have seen the 2018 seventh-round pick dazzle on the mound. The Mets have wisely moved him into a starting role with fantastic results.
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In 2018, Smith pitched primarily out of the bullpen for the Brooklyn Cyclones with three starts mixed in. The result was a 4-1 record and 0.76 ERA in 23.2 innings pitched. The small sample size was enough to put him with the St. Lucie squad at the start of this year where he went 5-5 with a 3.05 ERA in 17 starts.
Up another level and currently with the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, Smith has gone 1-0 with a 2.38 ERA after a pair of starts. The 22-year-old southpaw also found himself on MLB.com’s most recent updated list of top Mets prospects at number 11 following the recent Marcus Stroman trade.
Watching Smith emerge as a true prospect to watch comes at a good time for the Mets as they may soon embark on a search for new starters in the near future following a potential aggressive trade deadline. While we shouldn’t expect to see Smith in the majors anytime in 2019, a late arrival in 2020 is always possible.
Smith sat behind fellow pitchers Anthony Kay and David Peterson as well as 2019 draftees Matthew Allan and Josh Wolf. Kay is, of course, no longer with the organization nor is Simeon Woods Richardson. For Smith, this puts him a little closer to the center of the spotlight.
At a bare minimum, he could find a relief role in the bullpen. Lefty relief help has been a challenge for the Mets this year outside of veteran Justin Wilson when healthy.
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There is an opportunity for Smith to make headway on the Mets’ minor league depth chart and become a major league contributor sooner than later. From what we’ve seen in his young professional career, we can expect lots of strikeouts, good control, and an empty scoreboard for the opposing team.