By Timothy Roberts
Abaconian, Shameko Smith, has had a dream come true as the 20 year-old from Cooper’s Town was selected by the Colorado Rockies with the 386th pick in the 13th round of the 2017 Major League Baseball (MLB) Draft.
Shameko, a pitcher at Polk State College pitcher, was one of three Bahamian players who signed letters of intent to play at the school in January of last year. The other two were Chavez Fernander and Chavez Young.
Of the two, only Fernander is still with the team. Young signed with the Toronto Blue Jays last summer and is currently in their development system. All three of the Polk State College commits played high school baseball at Faith Baptist Academy in Long County, Georgia.
Shameko said “I grew on the softball field in Cooper’s Town with coach Niqel; he got me into baseball.” He said he would later move to Freeport where he was able to play every week.
He is thankful for his Coach’s help as he was afforded the ability to play Baseball at the high school and college level in America on scholarships.
“I just want to thank all my family who supported me throughout the journey and my coaches who have pushed me through all the hard work,” he said.
Right-handed pitcher Smith appeared in 14 games last season with 12 starts. He averaged 61.2 innings pitched, had an ERA (earned run average) of 2.48, 18 base-on-balls and allowed 27 runs. Smith also earned 2016 Rawlings-Perfect Game Honorable Mention last season and was named as an All-American in the Florida region. He was also named as a preseason All-American.
The Rawlings-Perfect Game Preseason All-Region selections comprise players from nine regions around the country. Rawlings-Perfect Game Preseason All-American honorees are the top 150 players from the All-Region pool. Each recipient is named on one of three, 50-man roster national teams.
In 2015, Smith earned Underclass Honorable Mention.
Prior to graduating high school, he was listed as the 378th best player in the nation, and 125th at his position. Smith was ranked as No. 62 overall in the state of Florida and No. 20 in his position. As a senior, he finished with an ERA of 0.58 in 24 innings. He had 39 strikeouts and held opponents to a .125 batting average. Faith Baptist finished with a 4-4 win/loss record.
Smith, 6’1” and 190 lbs., was a part of the Faith Baptist team that won the 2015 Perfect Game-Showdown Academies Championship. Their run at the tournament contributed to an eye-popping 19-1 overall win/loss record for Faith Baptist.
Smith is listed as a player who bats right-handed and throws right-handed. He played in The Bahamas Baseball Federation’s (BBF) Andre Rodgers National Championships with the North Abaco Baseball League.