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AngelsWin Today: AngelsWin.com's Midseason Top-30 Los Angeles Angels Prospects


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By The AngelsWin.com Prospect Posse

Welcome to our updated 2021 prospects list. After the tragedy that was a lost minor league season in 2020, we were very excited to see our minor leaguers in action. The big surprise this year is the veritable explosion of pitching, from strong performances by top prospects Reid Detmers and Chris Rodriguez, to the emergence of lesser-known guys like Davis Daniel and Robinson Pina, as well as many fringe guys all of a sudden becoming legitimate major league depth in the near future.

The Prospect Posse: Who Are We?

We are a group of nine regular contributors to this website, all of whom consider eyewitness accounts, scouting reports, statistical analysis, and just gut feeling in our assessment. We feel that our list is stronger for the fact that it includes nine contributors, all with slightly different emphases, both in terms of how we consider prospects, and what sort of guys stand out to us. As one can see with the “ranking ranges,” there is often wide disagreement, but it all evens out to provide what we feel is a very strong list.

One thing to note is that the lower in the rankings one gets, the more interchangeable the ordering. In terms of the methodology used to compile this list, some of the prospects are grouped in clusters. For instance, while there’s a gap between #10 and #11, the next three guys (#11-13) are all very close, as are #14-15, and #19-21. There is a large gap between #21 and #22, as well as after #25. In our methodology, there is a similar gap between #17 and #26 as there is between #26 and #50.

To put that another way, we—as a group—are rather clear on who our top 25 are, and how they are tiered in their relative rankings, but after that it is less clear.

Without further ado, here are our updated rankings:

1. REID DETMERS (21, LHP)

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Ranking Range: 1-4 Change: +3

Stats: 3.15 ERA, 13, GS, 60 IP, 18 BB, 106 SO in AA/AAA; 10.61 ERA in 2 GS in majors

Detmers has been all that we hoped for and more, largely due to his increased fastball velocity. Despite early struggles in his first two Major League starts, he has shown the flashes of excellence that led him to be our Top Prospect on this list. The floor for Detmers is very high—that of a good mid-rotation starter—but he could be better than that.

2. BRANDON MARSH (23, OF)

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Ranking Range: 1-4 Change: Same

Stats: 28 games, .287/.398/.528, 4 HR, in 28 Rk/AAA | 19 games, .154/.257/.215 in 21 major league games

Marsh missed much of the first half due to injury, but when he returned, he completely destroyed AAA pitchers (.382/.417/.735 in 8 games), before being called up. He’s struggled in his first exposure to major league pitching but shows flashes of a well-rounded game. In some ways he’s the hitting version of Detmers: very high floor, with a good ceiling, that of an All-Star who is plus in just about every facet of the game.

3. JO ADELL (22, OF)

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Ranking Range: 1-4 Change: -2

Stats: 73 games, .289/.342/.592, 23 HR in 73 AAA games | .304/.360/.478 in 6 major league games

Adell started the year with 7 walks and 57 strikeouts in his first 37 AAA games, but in the next 36 games he doubled his walk rate (15) and cut his strikeouts (42). In his first week in the majors, he’s looked like a completely different player than last year. Jo will require patience, but his ceiling is still very high and his ability to translate his power into the game is improving.

4. CHRIS RODRIGUEZ (23, RHP)

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Ranking Range: 2-6 Change: -1

Stats: 3.64 ERA, 29.2 IP, 15 BB, 29 SO in 15 games and 2 starts in the majors

Rodriguez has had an interesting path this year, starting in the major league bullpen after only 78.2 professional innings, and none above A+. He held his own and, after an injury layoff, was sent to AA to be stretched out as a starter. The future still looks bright, and like Detmers he has the potential to be a TOR arm.

5. SAM BACHMAN (21, RHP)

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Ranking Range: 4-10 Change: New

Stats: 0.00 in 1 GS, 2 IP, 0 BB, 2 SO in A+ ball

The Angels surprised everyone when they picked Bachman ahead of Kumar Rocker, although that seems less controversial now that Rocker and the Mets failed to reach an agreement. The big question is whether Bachman can stick as a starter, with some concerned about his violent delivery. But the stuff is immense, including a fastball that reaches triple digits and a slider to die for. Even if the Angels convert him to relief, he could be an elite closer.

6. KYREN PARIS (19, 2B)

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Ranking Range: 5-8 Change: +1

Stats: .302/.444/.535, 2 HR, 13 SB, and 18 BB in 23 games in A/Rookie ball

Paris started the season hot, but then went down with a fractured fibula for a couple months. He just got back to A ball and is continuing where he left off, displaying speed, defense, contact ability, discipline, and even a touch of power.

7. AROL VERA (18, SS)

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Ranking Range: 5-9 Change: +3

Stats: .317/.387/.471 in 26 Rookie ball games

Vera started the year scalding hot, hitting over .400 for his first week or so, but has cooled off, in a 1-15 funk as of this writing; still, a very promising start to his professional career.

8. JORDYN ADAMS (21, OF)

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Ranking Range: 5-11 Change: -3

Stats: .207/.278/.341 in 46 games in A+

The luster has dimmed somewhat as Adams has struggled this year, although some of that may be due to an injury that kept him out for six weeks. The talent is there, but it remains to be seen whether he can convert it to baseball skills.

9. JEREMIAH JACKSON (21, IF)

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Ranking Range: 6-11 Change: -1

Stats: .248/.322/.510 in 39 games in A ball Jackson continued where he left off in 2019, but at a level higher: lots of HR and strikeouts, although there are signs of slight improvement in BB%. He’s been out with quad strain for the last month and a half.

10. ALEXANDER RAMIREZ (18, OF)

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Ranking Range: 8-14 Change: +3

Stats: .290/.380/.548 in 23 Rookie games

With Adell and Marsh in the majors, Ramirez is arguably the highest upside bat in the Angels system.

(11-30 rankings)

11. JACK KOCHANOWICZ (20, RHP)

Ranking Range: 11-17 Change: -6

Stats: 6.75 ERA in 14 GS, 57.1 IP, 26 BB, 50 SO in A ball

Kochanowicz is a work in progress, but the Angels are focusing in on developing his individual pitches, so don’t worry too much about that ERA. He'll require patience, but remains one of the higher upside pitchers in the organization.

12. ADRIAN PLACENCIA (18, 2B)

Ranking Range: 8-24 Change: +16

Stats: .226/.407/.484 in 19 Rookie games

Placencia was noted for his sweet swing and, so far, the results are promising, displaying advanced plate discipline in his first professional season.

13. KY BUSH (21, LHP)

Ranking Range: 9-18 Change: New

Stats: NA

The Angels 2nd round pick in the 2021 Amateur Draft, Bush improved over his college career and could end up being a steal in the second round.

14. DAVIS DANIEL (24, RHP)

Ranking Range: 14-22 Change: +17

Stats: 2.47 ERA in 14 GS, 73 IP, 25 BB, 100 SO in A+/AA ball

While the focus has been on Detmers and Rodriguez, Daniel has not-so-quietly made a huge impression in his first full professional season, dominating A+ and adjusting quickly to AA. On the depth chart for the major league club next year, as either a starter or reliever.

15. EDGAR QUERO (18, C)

Ranking Range: 12-27 Change: New

Stats: .304/.513/.679 in 20 games in Rookie ball

Quero is one to dream on: an international signing who has utterly dominated Rookie ball. While it is very, very early, it is hard not to be excited about a hard-hitting catching prospect.

16. ROBINSON PINA (22, RHP)

Ranking Range: 13-33 Change: +10

Stats: 3.48 ERA in 16 GS, 75 IP, 46 BB, 107 SO in A/A+ ball

After a rough beginning to the season and a demotion to A ball, Pina has been impressive in his return to A+. Like Daniel, if he doesn’t stick in the rotation he could end up as a high leverage major league reliever.

17. ALEJANDRO HIDALGO (18, RHP)

Ranking Range: 13-32 Change: New

Stats: 3.55 ERA IN 4 GS, 25.1 IP, 8 BB, 30 SO In Rookie ball

An international signing, Hidalgo has impressed with his first exposure state-side.

18. DENZER GUZMAN (17, SS)

Ranking Range: 14-Not Ranked  Change: New

Stats: .296/.333/.333 in 8 games in the Dominican Rookie league.

Not much to go on yet, but Guzman’s scouting profile and chatter shows a lot of promise. 

19. WERNER BLAKELY (18, IF)

Ranking Range: 14-NR Change: Same

Stats: .214/.385/.314 in 21 games in Rookie ball

Another raw but talented young middle infielder, Blakely has displayed excellent plate discipline in his first season.

20. D’SHAWN KNOWLES (20, OF)

Ranking Range: 14-NR Change: -4

Stats: .225/.284/.355 in 62 games in A ball (23 of 24 in stolen bases)

It is hard not to be disappointed with Knowles’ performance this year, as his numbers have trended down over the last few seasons. Of interest, he's played a few games at shortstop, implying that the Angels want to diversify his skill-set.

21. JANSON JUNK (25, RHP)

Ranking Range: 16-NR Change: New

Stats: 2.14 ERA in 15 games, 13 starts; 21 BB and 72 SO in 71.1 IP in AA 

A new arrival from the Andrew Heaney trade, Junk has dominated AA this year, and joins the Angels’ increasingly deep pool of second tier minor league starters who provide a bit of insurance in the coming years.

22. ERIK RIVERA (20, LHP/OF)

Ranking Range: 20-NR Change: New

Stats: 1 GS, 3.1 IP, 1 BB, 6 SO

After a promising first game, Rivera was shut down. His return time is unknown.

23. MICHAEL STEFANIC (25, IF)

Ranking Range: 10-NR Change: New

Stats: .334/.405/.487 in 79 AA/AAA games

Angels fans hope they have another in the tradition of Walsh, Fletcher and Calhoun: a late-round draftee who sneaks up on you. While he probably ends up as a major league utility infielder, it is hard to argue with his numbers this year, which are similar at both levels.

24. HECTOR YAN (22, LHP)

Ranking Range: 17-NR Change: -13

Stats: 5.80 ERA in 16 GS, 68.1 IP, 44 BB and 73 SO in A+ ball

An overall disappointing year for Yan so far, largely due to control issues. A move to relief is probably inevitable and might benefit him.

25. WILLIAM HOLMES (20, RHP/OF)

Ranking Range: 15-NR Change: -9

Stats: NA

Holmes hasn’t played a pro game this year, remaining in the Arizona complex.

26. ORLANDO MARTINEZ (23, OF)

Ranking Range: 14-NR Change: +3

Stats: .247/.299/.441 in 74 games in AA

Some still like his bat skills, but the results aren’t there yet. Could carve out a career as a platoon/bench outfielder.

27. BRENDON DAVIS (24, IF/OF)

Ranking Range: 15-NR Change: New

Stats: .285/.350/.554, 20 HR and 10 SB in 79 games in A+/AA

One of the biggest surprises on the farm this year, former Rangers farmhand Davis has crushed the ball, his numbers even better in 16 AA games (.306/.403/.629). At the least, he’s a real sleeper.

28. JHONATHAN DIAZ (24, LHP)

Ranking Range: 10-NR Change: New

Stats: 2.22 ERA, 10 G/6 GS; 9 BB and 65 SO in 48.2 IP in AA

Diaz has been very impressive, although has lost a lot of time to injury. Another on the second-tier depth chart for next year.

29. LANDON MARCEAUX (21, RHP)

Ranking Range: 18-NR Change: New

Stats: NA

The Angels third-round pick in the draft, Marceaux could rise quickly, although has a limited ceiling.

30. DAVID CALABRESE (18, OF)

Ranking Range: 23-NR Change: -18

Stats: .136/.240/.152 in 19 games in Rookie ball

While Calabrese has been completely over-matched in his first taste of pro ball, he’s still very young. 

The Next Twenty (#31-50): Oliver Ortega, Aaron Herandez, Mason Albright, Ryan Smith, Jose Bonilla, Stiward Aquino, Jose Marte, Edwin Yon, Kevin Maitan, Luke Murphy, Packy Naughton, Livan Soto, Kyle Tyler, Adam Seminaris, Coleman Crow, Cooper Criswell, David MacKinnon, Edwin Hidalgo, Sam Peguero, Jose Salvador.

If you'd like to see our more in depth Top-30 Prospects entering the 2021 season with more scouting reports, you can check that out here.

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Here's the thing. We added so many arms between the draft and trades, and so many undrafted free agents (after the draft and with the international signings) and we haven't technically graduated any of our prospects yet. So, players basically holding their own in the rankings are actually doing well and improving. 

 

Next offseason, we will open up many spots with graduates and will add many more players. The funny thing is, seeing how many of our prospects are young, the talent level will at least stay the same and will most likely improve. 

 

There's a lot to be hopeful about with the Angels. We now have a good balance of pitching, hitting, and we finally have a catcher in development! 

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2 hours ago, Angelsjunky said:

The Prospect Posse: Who Are We?

--

Pure genius. Who are these guys?

I'll tell ya pal. 

@totdprods, @Inside Pitch, @Dochalo, @Dave Saltzer, @rafibomb, @ettin, @Second Base, myself and none other than the project manager and lead horse on this project, @Angelsjunky!

Great work everyone. Lots of new names from our top-30 rankings headed into the 2021 campaign. 

 

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1 hour ago, Angel Oracle said:

A farrrrr, farrrrr, cry from the down and out farm of six years ago (Dumbpoto resigning time)

I'll speak for myself, but definitely think that other members of the posse would agree, that this list was much harder to build and categorize than in recent years. Legitimately this system is going to rise pretty quickly in national rankings, presuming the Angels don't make a bunch of near-term trades. There are clearly old (Marsh, Vera, et al) and new (Quero, Daniel, et al) on the list and a lot of prospects who were borderline to even make the list, in the past, who have suddenly taken a big step forward (and the shortened season last year probably adds to that perception).

From my perspective it was much harder to rank these guys, this time around, which made me happy. 😄

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4 minutes ago, GoodTimesGoneBad said:

I feel like CRod should be ranked first over Detmers. He has really impressed since coming up. 

I agree with this.  I know nothing, but from what I have seen I would go with this:

CRod

Adell

Detmers

Marsh

Bachman

Then probably Kyren Paris. 

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For what its worth, no one ranked CRod first and only Inside Pitch ranked him 2nd. Second Base ranked him 6th, but the rest of us (7 of 9) ranked him 3rd or 4th. Of the nine of us, only IP and myself ranked him ahead of Detmers.

Top fives by Posse member:

@Angelsjunky: Marsh, Adell, Rodriguez, Detmers, Paris

@Chuckster70: Detmers, Adell, Rodriguez, Marsh, Bachman

@Inside Pitch: Marsh, Rodriguez, Detmers, Adell, Paris

@Second Base: Marsh, Detmers, Adell, Bachman, Adams

@Dave Saltzer: Detmers, Marsh, Rodriguez, Adell, Bachman

@ettin: Adell, Marsh, Detmers, Rodriguez, Vera

@rafibomb: Detmers, Adell, Marsh, Rodriguez, Bachman

@Dochalo: Detmers, Marsh, Rodriguez, Adell, Bachman

@totdprods: Detmers, Adell, Marsh, Rodriguez, Bachman

 

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7 minutes ago, Angelsjunky said:

For what its worth, no one ranked CRod first and only Inside Pitch ranked him 2nd. Second Base ranked him 6th, but the rest of us (7 of 9) ranked him 3rd or 4th. Of the nine of us, only IP and myself ranked him ahead of Detmers.

Top fives by Posse member:

@Angelsjunky: Marsh, Adell, Rodriguez, Detmers, Paris

@Chuckster70: Detmers, Adell, Rodriguez, Marsh, Bachman

@Inside Pitch: Marsh, Rodriguez, Detmers, Adell, Paris

@Second Base: Marsh, Detmers, Adell, Bachman, Adams

@Dave Saltzer: Detmers, Marsh, Rodriguez, Adell, Bachman

@ettin: Adell, Marsh, Detmers, Rodriguez, Vera

@rafibomb: Detmers, Adell, Marsh, Rodriguez, Bachman

@Dochalo: Detmers, Marsh, Rodriguez, Adell, Bachman

@totdprods: Detmers, Adell, Marsh, Rodriguez, Bachman

@Hells Rainbow CRod, Adell, Detmers, Marsh, Bachman, Paris

 

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Landon Marceaux is as good, if not better than Michael Roth was (anyone ten Bennett him?), and Roth was ranked 20th in the system, while Marceaux checks in at 29. Here's a throwback 2014 AW look. Nice to see @ukyah still commenting.

Now at first glance you might think nine spots isn't that big of a deal, but consider how those spots are distributed. For example, here is the top five prospects from 2014:

1. 2B Taylor Lindsey (traded among with Jose Rondon for a RP, Huston Street).

2. RHP RJ Alvarez (depth reliever)

3. 1B CJ Cron (third division starting 1B)

4. 3B Kaleb Cowart (AAAA player)

5. RHP Mark Sappington (topped out in AA, then became a notable youth pastor). 

Here's the full top 50, good times.

https://angelswinblog.blogspot.com/2014/01/angelswincom-presents-los-angeles.html?m=1

So the distribution of that nine prospect separation between Roth and Marceaux is largely situated at the top of the rankings, where we are seeing guys like Marsh, Adell, Detmers, Rodriguez, Bachman, Adams, Paris, Vera, Ramirez, etc... Guys with actual upside and more than likely, a fine MLB career ahead of them. Possibly more than fine. 

Now why am I even comparing these? Just using them to illustrate the difference between a Dipoto built farm system, and an Eppler/Minasian built farm. The system has come an absolutely incredible length in seven years. 

And sometimes, you don't even bother measuring the farm as much as you measure the young MLB talent on a roster. Yes, the Angels farm is decent, but look at the disaster. Sandoval, Suarez, Barria, Detmers, Rodriguez, Walsh, Adell and Marsh. Tons of young talent. And additional guys like Thaiss and Rengifo biding their time. 

Great talent, great depth. Bright future. 

 

Edited by Second Base
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17 minutes ago, Angelsjunky said:

Strad can't count.

You chose five, I chose six.  I also don’t have the same level of experience as some of you when judging our players, which is why I chose six, because I’ve seen four and have read quite a bit about the other two.  

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33 minutes ago, Second Base said:

Landon Marceaux is as good, if not better than Michael Roth was (anyone ten Bennett him?), and Roth was ranked 20th in the system, while Marceaux checks in at 29. Here's a throwback 2014 AW look. Nice to see @ukyah still commenting.

Now at first glance you might think nine spots isn't that big of a deal, but consider how those spots are distributed. For example, here is the top five prospects from 2014:

1. 2B Taylor Lindsey (traded among with Jose Rondon for a RP, Huston Street).

2. RHP RJ Alvarez (depth reliever)

3. 1B CJ Cron (third division starting 1B)

4. 3B Kaleb Cowart (AAAA player)

5. RHP Mark Sappington (topped out in AA, then became a notable youth pastor). 

Here's the full top 50, good times.

https://angelswinblog.blogspot.com/2014/01/angelswincom-presents-los-angeles.html?m=1

So the distribution of that nine prospect separation between Roth and Marceaux is largely situated at the top of the rankings, where we are seeing guys like Marsh, Adell, Detmers, Rodriguez, Bachman, Adams, Paris, Vera, Ramirez, etc... Guys with actual upside and more than likely, a fine MLB career ahead of them. Possibly more than fine. 

Now why am I even comparing these? Just using them to illustrate the difference between a Dipoto built farm system, and an Eppler/Minasian built farm. The system has come an absolutely incredible length in seven years. 

And sometimes, you don't even bother measuring the farm as much as you measure the young MLB talent on a roster. Yes, the Angels farm is decent, but look at the disaster. Sandoval, Suarez, Barria, Detmers, Rodriguez, Walsh, Adell and Marsh. Tons of young talent. And additional guys like Thaiss and Rengifo biding their time. 

Great talent, great depth. Bright future. 

 

Imagine the debate if we still had Sandoval, Barria, Suarez, Canning, Rengifo, and Thaiss available to rank.  

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Here's a bit more. I used a system that added up "ranking points," and then ordered them from low to high. For example, Detmers was (5 x 1) + (1 x 2) + (2 x 3) + (1 x 4) = 17.

The point totals were interesting in that they showed distinct tiers of players, or grouped clusters. Dividing them is subjective, but the final result looked something like this:

First tier (1-4): Detmers, Marsh, Adell, Rodriguez

Second Tier (5-9): Bachman, Paris, Vera, Adams, Jackson

(In-between: Ramirez, 10)

Third Tier (11-13): Kochanowicz, Placencia, Bush

Fourth Tier (14-17): Daniel, Quero, Pina, Hidalgo

(In-between: Guzman, 18)

Fifth Tier (19-21)Blakely, Knowles, Junk

Sixth Tier (22-25): Rivera, Sefanic, Yan, Holmes

Seventh Tier (26-33): Martinez, Davis, Diaz, Marceaux, Calabrese, Ortega, Hernandez, Albright

Eight Tier (34+): Everyone else

The tiers are separated by significant gaps in ranking points. The "in-between" players were roughly halfway between two tiers, and could be in either one. 

As I wrote in the article, certain groups of players were almost exactly the same in terms of ranking points:

- Kochanowicz, Placencia, Bush

- Daniel, Quero

- Pina, Hidalgo

- Blakely, Knowles, Junk

- Rivera, Stefanic, Yan, Holmes

The point being, the clustered players could really be ranked in any order, but the tiers illustrate some separation between groups of players. 

I would also argue that the "first tier" quartet are all bonafide top 100 prospects, while the second tier are more in the 100-200 range. It may be that the later tiers correspond with similar ranges (e.g. third with 200-300), but this is obviously highly speculative.

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1 hour ago, Dochalo said:

Imagine the debate if we still had Sandoval, Barria, Suarez, Canning, Rengifo, and Thaiss available to rank.  

 

1 hour ago, ten ocho recon scout said:

Ok, so out of those, rank em'

now?

sandoval, suarez, canning, barria, rengifo, thaiss.

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24 minutes ago, GoodTimesGoneBad said:

I know it’s way early but what has anyone seen from Marsh that looks promising? He looks exactly like Adell did last year but with even more strikeouts and no power. At least his defense is better. 

A BB% of 12.4% when the league average is 8% is a good indicator that Marsh already has the pitch recognition and discipline to be a good hitter.

He’s always been a patient hitter and that can be a challenge when you get to the bigs and you encounter pitchers who are much better at coming back from down in the count, have much better stuff to get you swinging with two strikes, are much better at attacking hitters…

Marsh is taking a lot of pitches in his at-bats currently, which is a good sign. He just hasn’t mastered the fouling off/connecting on two-strike counts yet and MLB pitchers are much better than minor leaguers at putting a hitter like Marsh away. For now.

Also, power hadn’t really been there in the minors for him yet. It develops last and he has all the makings of a guy who can get above-average power eventually. It took Charlie Blackmon three partial seasons and 162 games to hit his 10th HR. 

Edited by totdprods
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3 hours ago, GoodTimesGoneBad said:

I know it’s way early but what has anyone seen from Marsh that looks promising? He looks exactly like Adell did last year but with even more strikeouts and no power. At least his defense is better. 

Beyond what @totdprods said, you have to consider that the supposed, hypothetical Marlins trade for Meyer would have involved Marsh and his call up was, in part, likely a showcase of his abilities at the Major League level, which, despite his poor numbers, was solid, in terms of defense, and I think everyone sees that with a little more Major League at-bat's, his plate discipline will flourish further and more of those balls in play will fall into the gaps or even over the fence.

I like Marsh a lot, I hope he doesn't go anywhere, but if he does, a high-quality starter should be the return, obviously.

To more directly answer your question, Marsh has 5-tool capability on the baseball field, he will be a solid Major Leaguer once he irons out his "newness".

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