The depth of the 2022 White Sox continued to grow this week, and as minicamp for minor leaguers got started, the White Sox added another name to the fold.
According to MiLB-Transactions, the White Sox have signed former major league OF Dwight Smith Jr. to a minor league deal. The move has not yet been made official by the team, but it is likely that Smith would be assigned to AAA Charlotte.
Smith is a really interesting name. Son of a former big leaguer, Smith was drafted 53rd overall in the 2011 MLB Draft. He made his debut with the Blue Jays in 2017, and in two short stints with the Jays in 2017 and 2018, Smith slashed a combined .294/.365/.467 in 104 PAs, with his future looking incredibly bright.
He would find himself on the Orioles in 2019 after being traded for International bonus slot money that offseason. In 2019, he would take a step back, slashing just .241/.297/.412 in 101 games. In the shortened 2021 season, Smith would find himself in just 21 games, slashing .222/.306/.365 without really catching his footing with the club. He really isn’t known as much of a defender either, posting -16 DRS (Defensive Runs Saved) in his time in the majors.
He really struggled in AAA last season in 2021, slashing .220/.327/.283 in 147 PAs with the Reds organization. This signing with the White Sox poses a fresh start for the 29-year-old.
With the lockout still in place, RF remains a question mark for the White Sox. Andrew Vaughn, Adam Engel, Gavin Sheets, and others will obviously be vying for the spot if no one else is acquired via trade or free agency. At the very least, Smith will serve as depth in the organization with major league experience in the case of injury. At best, Smith is able to recapture some of his early-career success by refining his plate discipline. His career line at the majors sits at .248/.310/.416 with a 21.8% strikeout rate and 7.2% walk rate.
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