Dodgers Injury Update: Preliminary Indications Suggest Will Smith Only Dealing With Swelling
Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Will Smith during his MLB debut against the New York Mets
Harry How-Getty Images

When Austin Barnes suffered a mild hamstring strain that required a brief stint on the 10-day injured list, it created an unexpected opportunity for Will Smith. One of the top-rated prospects in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, Smith took that and ran with it.

He put together an impressive showing after making his MLB debut, though the Dodgers preferred for Smith to receive regular at-bats with Triple-A Oklahoma City rather than remain on the Major League roster as a third catcher.

Smith was recalled in a corresponding move to David Freese being placed on the IL, but his time with the Dodgers again was brief. While the club initially intended to option Smith back to OKC, he suffered a minor oblique injury that led to a stint on the 10-day injured list.

Smith has since returned and continued to shine in Triple-A. However, he endured a bit of a scare Wednesday night when signs got crossed and it resulted in Smith taking a pitch off his right hand/wrist.

He was removed from the game but Oklahoma City public relations director Alex Freedman corroborated initial reports of Smith having avoided serious injury:

Despite the encouraging signs, Smith was not in the lineup Thursday as Oklahoma City and Triple-A Iowa (Chicago Cubs affiliate) concluded their series with an afternoon matchup.

Smith went 0-for-3 with a walk prior to being removed. The 24-year-old was coming off a night in which he hit two home runs, including a first career grand slam. Smith’s seven RBI tied a career-best mark, initially set with High-A Rancho Cucamonga in 2017 and previously matched earlier this season.

Smith avoiding injury of course is key on a personal level and for Oklahoma City, but it also is imperative for the Dodgers as well. He figures to receive another call-up this year — likely when active rosters expand, if not sooner — and may in the conversation for a spot on a potential postseason roster.