Halo Hangout recently stopped by the home of LA Angels MiLB squad, the Inland Empire 66ers. One of the Angels top prospects, outfielder Brandon Marsh, is beginning to find his maturation after spending the majority of his age 20 season with the Class A Advanced 66ers.
Brandon Marsh currently ranks as the LA Angels 4th best prospect by MLB.com and the 5th by Baseball America. Watching him play, you’ll understand what’s so special about him that keeps him ranked in a class with Angel prospects such as Jo Adell and Jahmai Jones. At the age of 20 Brandon Marsh has broken through challenge time and time again. To get to where he was now wasn’t easy, and to keep progressing through the Angels system presents only a greater challenge. But it is said that the biggest tell of an athletes true potential is their ability to overcome challenge. Brandon Marsh has displayed his ownership of that ability in spades, and because of that it’s only a matter of time until he surpasses the challenges presented by Class A Advanced on his way to the Big Leagues.
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Brandon Marsh was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2016 draft, but did not play that season due to a stress fracture in his back. During a short 2017 season Brandon Marsh hit .350/.396/.548 with 22 extra base hits. It wasn’t all smooth sailing that season, as Marsh dealt with a thumb injury that sidelined him for a month. Despite the challenge of injury testing Marsh twice over already he’s shown he has the gumption and spirit to compete no matter what.
Because of that, it’s only a matter of time until Marsh breaks out in a big way.
Brandon Marsh #20
H.H: How have you been feeling throughout the second half?
Marsh: From the first half, coming here in mid-May, I was getting my feet wet a little bit. This second half has been a lot more fun. A little bit more success for me, everyone’s handling themselves pretty well. We’re grouping up well. It’s been a really fun second half so far
H.H: Over the last month, you’ve posted an OBP just under .400. How have you zoned in on your plate discipline since joining the 66ers?
Marsh: Staying within myself, finding better pitches to hit. Being disciplined within the zone, not trying to be Superman and step out of my physical capabilities. Just staying within myself and allowing myself to be patient in the situation
H.H: Looking back on the season, what are the biggest evolutions you’ve noticed in your development?
Marsh: I would have to say it’s the maturity in dealing with failure. This year there’s been a lot of failure in my season thus far. Just having to cope with that mentally. Stepping back into the box every-day and every at-bat with a new mindset. Leaving the bad reps behind and maturing through all those bad reps.
H.H: What has the experience of developing and playing with Jahmai Jones from childhood to today been like?
Marsh: It’s fun playing with a guy like ‘Jam’, not just from knowing him beforehand. He’s an all-around great guy, great clubhouse guy. Phenomenal player on the field. He brings the best out of everyone. He keeps smiles on everyones face no matter what. He’s a great guy, great teammate to be around throughout the process.
MiLB OPS: .814 in 141 Games Played
If there’s one mantra Brandon Marsh seems to hold dear, it’s the importance of maturity and dealing with failure. Failure is not a permanent state of being, but a stepping stone onto greater successes. We’ve seen this all the time, even players like Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani have faced the speeding concrete truck that is ‘failure’. Even our favorite Angel prospects have faced the unforgiving nature of failure; Jahmai Jones, Jared Walsh, and Jo Adell just to name a few. The one connecting factor between all of those players isn’t the failure they faced, but their strength to overcome.
Brandon Marsh has shown strength in spades during this 2018 season. At the outset, Marsh began the season with the Low A Burlington Bees, where he hit .295/.390/.470 in 37 games before his callup to the Class A Advanced Inland Empire 66ers. To cap off this promotion was the fact that Marsh would join his fellow top Angel prospects, Jo Adell and Jahmai Jones.
It was a rare look into the Angels future, watching the tandem of top rated prospects developing their talents to the top of their potentials. Just like the talents of Adell and Jones, the talent of Brandon Marsh is undeniable.
2018 Slash Line (Low A Burlington): .295/.390/.470
H.H: What the season about to wrap, what do you have planned for you offseason regimen?
Marsh: Getting ready for next season. Nothing much in between there, just grinding and getting back to what we need to get back for next year.
H.H: Is your defensive development meeting your expectations?
Marsh: Here and there. There’s been a couple iffy routes I’ve taken that I wish I could take back. Trying to be overly aggressive and trying to go get a ball. Other than couple of those reps I’ve felt them meet my expectations.
H.H: Have you been thinking about your goals for 2019?
Marsh: No, no not at all. I’m working on getting through this year. I’ll worry about that when the time comes.
H.H: When you envision yourself as a complete player, what tools do you see developed the most?
Marsh: It would definitely be at the plate. That’s where I’m lacking right now. I feel like once that develops that’ll be the biggest jump, jump in maturity really. At the plate, from mechanics to repetition, those things on the offensive side would be the biggest development for me.
Brandon Marsh #20
Over the last month Brandon Marsh has hit .269 with an OBP at .355 while collecting 15 RBI’s and 13 BB’s. Not only is Marsh finding a handle on his game, he’s slowly beginning to realize his ability to thrive. Marsh is only in his first full season with the Angels organization, having missed the 2016 short season due to injury and seeing only 192 Plate Apperances in 2017.
So far his 2018 season, at the age of 20, has seen it’s fair share of ups and downs. With one month in the season left there’s still plenty of opportunity for growth from the young outfielder, and being the player he is it’s only a matter of time until he seizes his own growth. The future holds a lot for the maturing Brandon Marsh, but most importantly, the future holds a spot with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for the budding young star.