Former Pitt catcher Kevan Smith is getting his shot with the Chicago White Sox after starting catcher Geovany Soto went down with some injuries. If he keeps things up offensively, he might hang onto the job for a while.
Soto had surgery back in May and is expected to be out until August. But while Smith started off slowly, he's really picked things up offensively. Smith is now batting .288 on the year and has hit safely in 15 of his last 19 games. He hasn't shown a ton of power but did hit his first home run last month.
That hitting has picked up significantly since earlier in the year. Smith batted an incredible .328 in June and is hitting .333 in July. He isn't only hitting safely in games, he's racking up some multi-hit games. Soto is a stronger power hitter but is also batting only .190 in this injury-plagued season.
The biggest problem for Smith has come defensively. As of a few days ago, he was only 1-21 in throwing out baserunners this season. For as well as he's hitting offensively, that's a huge black mark against him. If runners don't respect him and are able to easily advance once on base, that balances out his offensive production quite a bit.
Hopefully he makes some progress in that regard, though, and is able to keep hitting. Batting nearly .300 this year, there's no doubt that Smith is proving he has major league value.