Thunder Name Adonis Smith Manager for 2024 Draft League Season

Smith Returns to Trenton for First Season as Manager
021224- Adonis Smith Manager

(Trenton, NJ) – The Trenton Thunder, presented by NJM Insurance Group, are pleased to announce their new manager for the 2024 season in the MLB Draft League.

Adonis Smith will be the second manager for the Draft League Thunder as a co-founding member of the MLB Draft League. Smith, who was the hitting coach for the Thunder in 2023, is no stranger to the Trenton area and is well qualified for the manager position. With Smith as the hitting coach a season ago, the Thunder had the first ranked offense in the first-half of the year with a league-leading .407 team slugging percentage that also included 16 home runs in the month of June (1st).

“We are incredibly excited to name Adonis Smith as our new manager and to welcome him back to Trenton for the 2024 season,” said Thunder GM Jon Bodnar. “There’s no question Adonis possesses the values and skills that we believe produce continued success on the field. He embodies what the Thunder look for as the leader of this ball-club and we can’t wait to see him thrive in an elevated role this year.”

“I am excited to get to work,” said new Thunder manager Adonis Smith. “To be in this position as some of the great Managers who had this role before me, for such a great organization, is truly a dream come true. I’m thankful for the Trenton Thunder, to Jeff Hurley and to Jon Bodnar, for giving me this opportunity and I can’t wait to help develop these young men in chasing their dreams of being a Major League Baseball player.”

“I’m here to make sure these guys grow as ball players but also as professionals, said Smith. “For a lot of these guys, this is their first time being a professional ball player; There’s a lot that comes with that and I want our guys to be themselves, be relaxed, be confident, compete and believe in their ability to play this game in which they have played for most of their lives.”

The Thunder had 10 more players selected in the draft for the second consecutive season, including an additional five players who inked contracts with affiliated clubs as un-drafted free agents. - RHP Carlson Reed - Pittsburgh Pirates (Round 4, 104th pick), RHP Ryan Birchard - Milwaukee Brewers (Round 5, 155th pick), OF Isaiah Drake - Atlanta Braves (Round 5, 162nd pick), LHP Magdiel Cotto - Pittsburgh Pirates (Round 11, 317th pick), RHP Jeremy Lee - Minnesota Twins (Round 13, 387th pick), RHP Carlton Perkins - Chicago White Sox (Round 15, 449th pick), RHP Austin Amaral - Washington Nationals (Round 16, 465th pick), RHP Donye Evans - Detroit Tigers (Round 16, 470th pick), INF Trey Paige - St. Louis Cardinals (Round 17, 515th pick), INF Charlie Pagliarini - Seattle Mariners (Round 19, 577th pick), INF Anthony Calarco - Texas Rangers (UDFA), RHP Joan Gonzalez - San Diego Padres (UDFA), RHP Nick Payero - Cincinnati Reds (UDFA), INF Chris Brito - Kansas City Royals (UDFA), LHP Jonah Hurney - Cincinnati Reds (UDFA)

Prior to coaching, Smith played collegiately at both Division 1 programs, North Carolina State and North Carolina A&T. He played professionally in the Frontier League for the Johnstown Johnnies (PA), the River City Rascals (MO), and the Cook County Cheetahs (IL). Before coming to Trenton just a season ago, Adonis made his Draft League coaching debut for the Williampsort Crosscutters in 2022 as hitting coach under Jesse Litsch. In just his third year in the league, Adonis becomes the new Manager for the Trenton Thunder.

Your Trenton Thunder open the 2024 Season at home on Tuesday, June 4th at 7:00PM for the first of a three-game series against the State College Spikes! Come out to Trenton Thunder Ballpark as we celebrate our 30th Anniversary! To purchase tickets, call (609)-394-3300, Opt 4 or visit

About Trenton Thunder Baseball

The Trenton Thunder have drawn over 10.7 million fans over 30 years and have won the three major awards that Minor League Baseball teams can win: the Johnson Trophy for the "Nation's Best Franchise", the Larry MacPhail Trophy for Outstanding Club Promotion, and the Bob Frietas Award for Long-Term Success (Given by Baseball America). The team has given back over $8.5 million worth of goods, services, and monetary donations through Trenton Thunder Charities, under the Grand Slam We Care Foundation umbrella. The Thunder can be found online at