Mar 4, 2015; Peoria, AZ, USA; Seattle Mariners shortstop Tyler Smith (78) flips the ball to second base against the San Diego Padres during a spring training baseball game at Peoria Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Tyler Smith – SS
The Oregon State alum is making some serious noise thus far in the AFL. Tyler Smith’s .385 batting average and .448 on base percentage are both tops on the Javelins. Smith has also contributed 1 double, 1 triple, 1 home run, 3 RBI and 1 stolen base through 7 games. He has worked a pair of free passes, and has struck out just 3 times in 26 at bats.
The Mariners selected Smith in the 8th round of the 2013 draft, and the middle infielder has exceeded expectations at every level. He spent 2015 with the Jackson Generals, posting a .271/.361/.354 slash line across 520 plate appearances. Smith had 24 doubles, 2 triples, 3 home runs, 32 RBI and swiped 10 bases.
Tyler Smith has a similar build and makeup to that of Chris Taylor. Both players are solid defenders with plus athleticism, but neither guy has much pop. I expect the 24-year-old to begin next season in Tacoma with the Rainiers. Becoming a utility infielder is likely his ceiling in the big leagues.
Next: David Rollins