Reasons to be Excited About Mariners Draft Pick Aidan Smith

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Drafting three high schoolers in the first round of the MLB Draft will certainly grab a lot of headlines. The Seattle Mariners drafted Colt Emerson, Jonny Farmelo, and Tai Peete with their first three draft picks and they are all very exciting prospects. However, the Mariners fourth round selection Aidan Smith should be garnering more excitement from Mariners fans.

Aidan Smith is a high school outfielder from Texas who the Mariners drafted in the fourth round of the draft that took place earlier this month in Seattle at All Star Week. Even though he was the club's fourth round pick, he was actually their sixth player selected because of their bonus picks. Everyone knows the phrase 'Money Talks' and that certainly applies here. Seattle paid Smith $1.2 million to sign with the club which is about the value of a late second round pick.

The Mariners had to target Smith in their draft plans because teams have to spread out their bonus pool money and they wanted to use more of it on Smith than anyone else with that fourth round pick. The pick value for their fourth round pick was just over $530 thousand, so they really must like Smith to give him that much money.

When digging into Smith's profile, the first thing that stands out is how athletic he is. He is 6-foot-3 and he is lean. He has plenty of room to add in a muscle to his current 190 pound frame. He moves well and is very fast. In 2022 on the showcase circuit he had a 6.48 60 yard time according to Perfect Game. That is 70 grade speed according to Fangraphs. It is likely that he slows down as he gains muscle and gets older but being an above average or plus runner is certainly valuable.

The righty is also a good hitter. MLB Pipeline called him, "The best pure hitter in the Texas high school ranks". That is certainly high praise because Texas has a lot of good baseball players that come out every year. Joe Doyle of Future Stars Series also thinks his bat is going to be good, "Scouts like the bat an awful lot and foresee a potential middle-of-the-order stick with above average power upside and a gap-oriented swing that should hit for average immediately."

If Smith can turn into a doubles power hitter who hits .250-.270 with 12-18 home runs then he would be a really good player for the Mariners. That is a real quality player and if he can be a threat on the bases occasionally and play good defense in the outfield. He should be able to stick in center field for a bit in the minors but probably is best suited for a corner. Smith is a really exciting player who will fly under the radar for now but he will be one of the Mariners top five outfield prospects going forward.