Amelia’s Smith is making a pitch for pro career

With the World Series upon us, it is time to be encouraged about the prospect of a near future New York Mets’ team that will include on its roster a Clermont countian.

Joe Smith recorded a very respectable first year of professional baseball. The Amelia High School graduate was drafted this year by the New York Mets in the third round and was the 94th selection overall in the First Year Player Draft.

As a member of the Class A Brooklyn Cyclones, the 6-foot, 2-inch, 205-pound right hand pitcher appeared in 17 games and pitched 20 innings, allowing 10 hits and three runs, only one of them earned. He walked three adversaries, and struck out 28 with his wide side arm delivery. His opponents had a combined batting average of just .141. He had a 0-1 record, but a superior 0.45 earned run average.

His performance was so superior he was moved up later in the season to the Binghamton (N.Y.) Mets, a Class AA farm team of the big league club.

Here, Smith achieved a 0-2 record and a 5.68 earned run average as he appeared in 10 games and pitched 12 2/3 innings allowing 12 hits and eight runs, all earned. He free passed 11 foes and whiffed 12.

“They shut me down the last weeks of the season because I had pitched so many innings,” said the son of Mike and Lee Smith of Pierce Township. “I can’t complain, though. It’s been fun.”

He plans to spend part of the off season returning to Wright State University where he was studying and playing baseball. He was attending Wright State when he was drafted after earning the honor of being named the Horizon League Player of the Year.

The former Fort Ancient Valley Conference all-star cager and diamondman for Amelia’s Barons was also a NCAA All-Mideast Regional second-team all-star for Wright State’s Raiders.

He plans to go back to Binghamton soon. “I want to be healthy for spring. I want to make the big club,” he said.