Home News Dominic Smith back at Citi Field, now as visitor with Nationals

Dominic Smith back at Citi Field, now as visitor with Nationals

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A familiar face returned to Citi Field on Tuesday, making for an emotional night for one who was a Met from the start.

“I’ll try not to get emotional, we’ll see how it goes,” Dominic Smith said before the Nationals blanked the Mets, 5-0.

In November, the Mets didn’t extend Smith’s contract after the former first-round pick (11th overall in 2013) posted a second straight lackluster season, running into injuries and struggling at the plate.

Smith’s breakout came in 2020, hitting .316 with 10 home runs and 42 RBIs in 199 plate appearances.

The following two years were a struggle and during his final months with the Mets, Smith hit .194 in 58 games and 152 plate appearances in the majors, while bouncing between the Mets and Triple-A Syracuse.

The past was no matter on the Mets’ end, as the stadium played a tribute video to Smith while fans clapped and hollered, honoring his six years in New York.

Nationals first baseman Dominic Smith
USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

As a free agent, Smith was looking for playing time and Washington is giving it to him on a one-year, $2 million platter. He has played in 19 of the Nationals’ 22 games this season. Smith went 1-for-4 with a walk Tuesday and is hitting .234 with four RBIs.

“That’s what was a big selling point for me to come over here,” Smith said. “We have some good young talent on this roster and they just won a World Series in 2019. So, coming to an organization who believes highly in you, I feel like that’s what you wanted to do and wanted to be a part of.”

With the added playing time, comes the necessary repetitions at the plate. Smith said he has “not yet” found a rhythm, but he and Nationals’ manager Dave Martinez hope to find Smith’s spark again.

“It’s early in the season, we’re gonna get him right with his swing,” said Martinez. “Hopefully today, this will jump-start him a little bit. He could have the same performance that he did against us against them.”

Ahead of the matchup, Smith said he was excited to play with his new team and hopefully make it “tough” for his now division rival.

“I’m extremely happy … I just want to help these young guys, help myself, and the whole organization get back to where we were in [2019],” he said.

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