Mets fans got their first taste of a full-time designated hitter position in 2020, as Major League Baseball adopted the universal DH as part of this season’s rule changes.
Dominic Smith was penciled into the DH spot five times this season, but it was enough to sell him on the rule change moving forward.
“For me, I would love that,” Smith said. “I'm sure the other National League teams would agree. Just to insert another bench guy into the lineup every day, giving 15 more guys an everyday job. And just being able to rotate guys in and out of the lineup, give them a DH day, I loved it. I felt like it really kept a lot of us fresh. I don't see why we wouldn't adopt it until the end of time.”
Yoenis Cespedes likely would have served as more of a full-time DH had he played the entire season, but once he opted out, manager Luis Rojas rotated the position between a few players. Pete Alonso made 17 appearances as the designated hitter, while Robinson Cano and J.D. Davis each made 11 starts at the position.
Smith, meanwhile, split the rest of his games between first base and left field, and wants to maintain his versatility moving forward. He’d even like to show he can play other outfield positions in addition to left.
“I feel like I showed the Mets that I could be good out there in left field,” Smith said. Obviously I can play a little bit of first base. I've proved that I could do that, as well. I'm going to go into this offseason and work my butt off like I do every year and show them that I can play all three outfield spots. Obviously I need to work a little bit on my footspeed to do all that, but it's just one of my goals to be a complete and better player.”
The 25-year-old is having a career year in his first season as an everyday player – his 42 RBIs are a career-high despite the shortened season. He comes into Saturday’s doubleheader with a .322/.383/.622 slash line, all of which would be career-bests, as well.