2015 Toronto Blue Jays Top Prospects: #16 Dwight Smith Jr.
It’s that time of year, where the team here at Jays Journal once again discusses the Top 20 prospects in the Toronto Blue Jays system. This year, we took a mixed approach to our rankings. Not only did we take a ranking from each member of our writing staff, but we also figured in the rankings from other publications as well, including MLB.com, Baseball America, Baseball Prospectus, and Minor League Ball.
Basically, we wanted to create the most all-inclusive Blue Jays prospect ranking out there.
At #16 we have the son of former Chicago Cub outfielder, Dwight Smith Jr. (@dsmith25blujay).
Name: John Dwight Smith
Position: Leftfield (possible move to 2B in 2015)
Date of Birth: October 26, 1992
Acquired: Selected 53rd overall, in the 1st round of the 2011 Amateur Draft by the Toronto Blue Jays
Height/Weight: 5’11″/185 Ibs
- R. Howard Webster Award Winner- 2014
- MiLB.com organization All-Star- 2014
- Post-Season All-Star- 2014
- Mid-Season All-Star- 2014
- Formerly ranked at 19th in both 2014 and 2013
Stats and Analysis
In 2014, Dwight Smith Jr. continued to demonstrate a solid approach at the plate with decent walk (10.9 BB%) and strikeout (12.9 K%) numbers with a very good 0.84 BB/K. Smith was able to duplicate his average from 2013 in 2014, while increasing his power numbers (.169 ISO). Smith displays above average baseball IQ in every facet of the game which allowed him to lead the team in runs, hits, doubles, triples, HR, RBI, and BB.
Smith splits were pretty even with a triple slash line of .278/.363/.412 and 6 HR against RHP and .300/.364/.575 and 6 HR against LHP. Dwight enjoyed a strong second half hitting .303/.385/.526 with 8 HR and 33 RBI. He also showed a clutch bat with .305/.394/.492 slash line with RISP.
Dwight is not a physical specimen like D.J. Davis, Anthony Alford, and Dalton Pompey, but continues to produce decent numbers from his compact frame. He doesn’t have the speed of those three but picks his spots with 80% success rate.
In the field, Smith split time between LF (78 GP) and CF (39 GP) and found more success in CF were he produced a 1.000 Fielding Percentage. Dwight led the team with 16 outfield assists, showing off his strong arm.
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This Fall, Smith played for the Mesa Solar Sox of the Arizona Fall League where he experimented with second base. In 42AB, Smith hit .262 with 5 RBI, a double, and a triple.
The Blue Jays crop of outfield prospects is very thin, which makes Dwight Smith Jr. a prospect to keep an eye on in 2015. Smith will start the season with the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats of the Eastern League after spending the entire season with the Blue Jays Advanced A-ball affiliate. The question will be whether he plays CF or LF or 2B or be used in a similar fashion as Jon Berti was utilized by Fisher Cats manager Bobby Meaeham in 2014.
It would come as no surprise to see Smith’s development accelerated in 2015, with a possible September call-up being a very real possibility. Smith will need to add more power to his game to have a legit shot at becoming an everyday OF option in major leagues, or risk falling into Kevin Pillar/Brad Glenn territory.
Next: The Ronald Belisario deal with Blue Jays falls through.