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Smith's sidewinding future took form in Ohio

Joe Smith, RHP, Angels
Hometown: Cincinnati

If not for an injury suffered at Amelia High School in Batavia, Ohio, the Angels might not have had their sidewinding setup man. Smith tore his labrum as a sophomore in high school, forcing him to end his scholatic pitching career and initiating a move to first base. Still, he ended up earning all-city honors as both a baseball and basketball player in high school.

When Smith moved to college, his career took a decisive turn. After he was cut from Wright State's team as a walk-on during his freshman year, Smith made the team his sophomore year and was converted into a sidearm pitcher. It was with that arm slot that Smith thrived, earning Horizon League Player of the Year honors and becoming a third-round Draft pick of the Mets. 

The Ohio native also pitched for the cross-state Indians before signing with the Angels this past offseason.

Matthew DeFranks is an associate reporter for
Read More: Los Angeles Angels, Joe Smith