Detroit Tigers Top 20 Prospects: No.14 Dylan Smith

Alabama pitcher Dylan Smith throws against Florida during the SEC Tournament. [Staff Photo/Gary Cosby Jr.]Sec Tournament Alabama Vs Florida
Alabama pitcher Dylan Smith throws against Florida during the SEC Tournament. [Staff Photo/Gary Cosby Jr.]Sec Tournament Alabama Vs Florida /

We continue our rankings with Dylan Smith; ranked our 14th-best Detroit Tigers prospect

The staff at Motor City Bengals put together their own Detroit Tigers prospect ranking independent of one another. Co-site experts Rogelio Castillo and Chris Brown aggregated that info and used the averages to come up with the site’s Top 20.

Next on our countdown is Dylan Smith who is an intriguing player out of the 2021 draft who will be making his debut season in pro ball this year

Dylan Smith’s Background:

Dylan Smith is a 6’2, 180 pound right-handed pitcher from Huntsville, Texas and was selected 74th overall by the Detroit Tigers in the 2021 MLB Draft. He played college ball at the University of Alabama, also home of Tigers right-hander, Spencer Turnbull. In his three years with the Crimson Tide, Smith posted a 3-8 record with a 4.30 ERA in 121.1 total innings pitched and was named to the 2021 NCAA All Tournament Team for the Ruston Regional. Since being drafted by the Tigers, he has not yet pitched in the Minors but we will be sure to see him in the system this upcoming year. Smith features a four seam fastball that tops out in the mid 90s along with two plus secondary pitches including a curveball and slider. He is known for being a strikeout pitcher, as he ranks third all time in Alabama school history with 113 strikeouts and possesses a 9.7 strikeouts per nine rate. 

Detroit Tigers
Alabama pitcher Dylan Smith makes a pitch vs. Ole Miss on March 26, 2021. /

Dylan Smith’s Strengths:

Smith possesses many notable strengths, one of which being his durability and ability to withstand a large amount of innings pitched throughout the duration of a season as he led Alabama with 98.1 innings pitched in 2021 and ranked 8th in the SEC with 57.0 innings pitched in conference play. Transitioning from a relief pitcher in his first two seasons at Alabama to a starter in his third and final season increased Smith’s durability, and regularly facing stiff SEC competition including teams such as Vanderbilt and Florida will stand him in good stead for his transition into pro ball. Furthermore, Smith possesses legitimate swing-and-miss secondary pitches including his curveball and slider which will hopefully allow him to make a smooth transition into the next level by keeping hitters off balance.

Dylan Smith’s Weaknesses:

A notable weakness of Dylan Smith is that he is prone to giving up home runs as he posted a 1.3 home runs per nine innings rate during his last season at Alabama which stemmed from him misplacing his pitches to good SEC hitters. Another potential weakness I could foresee for Smith is not having extremely high fastball velocity, but he is still only 21 years old with room to fill out and potentially add additional velocity to his fastball which will allow him to gain more success at the next level.

Our Take on Dylan Smith:

Being a third round pick, Smith possesses great potential that Tigers fans should be excited about. As stated earlier, Smith has not pitched in pro ball since he was selected by the Tigers, and I would envision that if all goes well we could see him in low-A to start the 2022 season. His durability and his ability to throw three above average pitches during his time at Alabama has been highlighted throughout this profile, so I fully see him pitching as a starter in the minors barring any injury. We are still a long way from projecting when and in what capacity Smith could contribute to the big league team, but if he experiences success in the Minor league system he will make for a very intriguing option for the Tigers.