Major League Baseball

Smith picks up 14th hold, ERA at 0.91

While not nearly as active as he was in May out of Milwaukee’s bullpen, Will Smith’s slider has been making a name for itself around the National League.

The 6-foot-5, 250-pound reliever from Newnan has been gaining attention with a pitch he’s only thrown for three years, with players and local media referring to it as “the slider of death.”

Smith, who picked up his 14th hold of the season while pitching a scoreless inning in New York during a 3-1 victory over the Mets on Wednesday, lowered his ERA to 0.91 with 37 strikeouts in a team-high 33 appearances in his first season with Milwaukee after being traded during the offseason from Kansas City.

Only four of 45 batters have managed a hit this season off Smith’s slider for a .089 batting average.

Smith, who backed away from throwing a slider during his years at Northgate High, took a second look at the pitch when he arrived in the Texas League with Double-A Northwest Arkansas.

Last year with the Royals, batters were just 4-for-43 against his slider. Of 438 pitches in the major leagues, Smith has yielded six extra-base hits with the pitch.

After earning honors as Milwaukee’s Pitcher of the Month for May, Smith has made five appearances this month while establishing himself primarily as a setup man in the seventh or eighth inning ahead of closer Francisco Rodriguez.

For the season, the imposing left-hander has allowed just three earned runs, two of which came in back-to-back appearances on June 4 and 5 at Minnesota. He’s yet to throw more than an inning and a third in any single appearance.

Among setup men in the National League, Smith is currently among the top-four with Pittsburgh’s Tony Watson (16 holds, 0.90 ERA, 30 IP), Washington’s Tyler Clippard (15 holds, 1.23 ERA, 29.1 IP) and Arizona’s Brad Ziegler (15 holds, 2.62 ERA, 34.1 IP) as the most effective.



More Sports

High School Softball

Five standouts earn All-State honors from GACA

‘Tis the season for presents and gifts. But earning All-State softball honors from the Georgia Athletic Coaches Association wasn&rsquo ... Read More


High School Wrestling

Vikings continue busy week at Norseman Duals

Just two days after winning this year's Coweta County Championship, the Northgate Vikings rolled the wrestling mats back out Friday at home ... Read More


Heritage lineups sweep Harvester

Heritage School lineups dominated opposing lineups on Thursday at Harvester Christian while earning a sweep in non-region play while getting ... Read More


Tied up in knots

County championships provide excitement

Since retiring as a varsity wrestling coach following a career that included over 300 victories, Adrian Anderson had been happy to stay in t ... Read More


Coweta Wrestling Championships

Vikings create own ‘breaks’ to claim title

Northgate is sitting on top of the Coweta County wrestling world again. The Vikings captured the annual county championships in their own gy ... Read More

Northgate leads All-Region cheerleading squad

Northgate’s competitive cheerleading squad led this year’s All-Region 4-AAAAA team with eight selections. Earning honors for the ... Read More