SSS rank among all catchers in the system: 6
Colby Smelley, a native of Tuscaloosa, Ala., stayed in his hometown to play college ball for Shelton State Community College. He enjoyed a terrific two years with the Buccaneers, culminating in 2021 by slashing .436/.536/.687 in 54 games with 16 doubles, nine homers, 48 RBIs, 29 walks and 27 strikeouts. As a reward for his efforts, he signed with the Sox after being selected in the 13th round in July’s draft.
Like many of the catchers who played in the ACL, Smelley didn’t receive much playing time. In nine games totaling 29 at-bats, he slashed .241/.267/.310 with two doubles, a walk and eight strikeouts. While he threw out just 22% of attempted base stealers with Shelton State in 2021, Smelley nailed 2-of-4 such attempts for the Arizona squad. He did play some outfield in college as well, so he may have a bit more versatility than most catchers.
Because he’ll be 22 before next season starts, it’s possible Smelley begins next year at Kannapolis or Winston-Salem.