Astros Draft Prospect Profile: Pavin Smith, 1B, Virginia
The Astros underachieved in the eyes of many last year, finishing 84-78, giving the Astros the 15th overall pick in the upcoming MLB Draft. The Astros can go a multitude of directions with their draft selection. Over the coming weeks, we’ll preview names the Astros could possibly take at number 15.
Today we start with Virginia First Baseman Pavin Smith.
Smith has a 6’2” 220 lb frame. He bats and throws left-handed.
2015: 68 G, .307 BA/.373 OBP/.467 SLG, 14 2B, 7 HR, 44 RBI, 26 BB/40 SO
2016: 60 G, .329 BA/.410 OBP/.513 SLG, 16 2B, 8 HR, 57 RBI, 36 BB/23 SO
2017: 38 G, .349 BA/.423 OBP/.604 SLG, 8 2B, 10 HR, 50 RBI, 21 BB/5 SO
The first thing that jumps out about Smith is how smooth his swing is. Smith has a pretty straightforward stance and load. He starts with his feet slightly open and spread a little more than shoulder width apart. His swing really does remind me of Robinson Canó. Both have extremely smooth swings, both beautifully transition weight. They have extremely similar finishes.
Smith doesn’t display any major mechanical flaws. I would like to see him keep his front hip in a little longer and stay up the middle, as he is a little pull heavy, but it won’t prevent him from being successful at the big league level.
Smith picks it really well over at first base and moves athletically. He’s also listed as an outfielder, but he hasn’t spent much time there at Virginia. I wouldn’t be surprised if he can play a solid defensive outfield as well. Smith also runs well for a first baseman. He could be a stolen base threat at the major league level.
MLB Comp: Eric Hosmer
Smith ultimately reminds me of Eric Hosmer. Hosmer is one of the more athletic first basemen in the bigs, and Smith will join him down the road. Both play an excellent defensive first base. Hosmer and Smith have similar swings, although I think Smith’s is smoother. I project Smith to hit around .280 and hit 20-30 homers at the big league level.
**Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images**