Josh Smoker was a former first-round pick who the Mets plucked out of the Independent Leagues. He ran into injury problems and lost his fastball, which caused his fall from grace. Smoker recovered his fastball and made it back to the majors, where he was a forgettable reliever. The main issue was that the Mets thought since he was a lefty reliever that he should be a LOOGY. But Smoker had no great ability to retire lefties. In frustration, the Mets sent him to the Pirates in return for another lefty reliever, one they hoped could be a replacement LOOGY.
In return they got Daniel Zamora. Last year Zamora made it to the majors and pitched pretty good in a short sample. Overall, he had a 3.00 ERA/2.38 FIP/2.41 xFIP in 16 games and a grand total of 9 IP. Yeah, they got him to get out lefties, remember.
Zamora allowed a .763 OPS versus LHB and a .466 OPS versus RHB. It seems worse than it really was. He allowed a triple and a homer in his four hits allowed to lefties, who he also fanned nine times in 19 PA.
Hard to tell what he is at this point. But it would be nice if the Mets could just use him as a low-leverage pitcher out of the pen, instead of forcing him into the LOOGY role. Maybe he’d give you 60 acceptable innings if you’d give him the chance to do that.