Angels top prospects Jo Adell and Brandon Marsh is a friendship made in heaven

Jo Adell, LA Angels (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jo Adell, LA Angels (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Two of the LA Angels top prospects Jo Adell and Brandon Marsh come from very different backgrounds, but they have hit it off ever since they met during rookie ball in 2017.

The LA Angels are blessed to have both Brandon Marsh and Jo Adell in their minor league system as they are both phenomenal players with a huge upside. However, they are as different as night and day. Marsh was drafted in the second round out a little town in Georgia called Buford which is about 40 miles from Atlanta.  Adell, on the other is from the heart of a big city, Louisville, Kentucky. His high school is almost as big as Marsh’s whole town (not quite, but it is one of the biggest HS in Louisville).

Louisville definitely has its rough areas, compared to the quietness of Buford.  When you meet and talk to either Marsh or Adell, one thing they have in common is their passion for playing the game of baseball. The pair has pretty much followed each other throughout the minor league system, with both players ending the 2017 season together at Orem and then starting the 2018 season in Burlington.  However, Adell ended 2018 in Double-A Mobile while Marsh stayed in High Single-A Inland Empire.

In 2019 both started in Double-A Mobile, but Adell got called up to Triple-A Salt Lake City while Marsh stayed in Mobile. It is a safe bet that both players will be reunited in the Angels Spring Training camp and they probably will both start the season in Triple-A Salt Lake.

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This fall both Marsh and Adell were chosen to play in the Arizona Fall League, which has been long-known as a proving ground for high-rated prospects. Both made the AFL’s All-Star Game and have performed very well. Adell ended up hitting .280 with three homers nine RBIs and three stolen bases. Marsh has been even better hitting .333 with two homers and 11 RBIs with four stolen bases.

In 267 minor league games Brandon Marsh has hit .287 with 21 homers and 159 RBIs and has also stolen 43 bases with a .368 OBP. Adell’s numbers are very similar, but he has played in only 224 games due to injuries that plagued him in 2019. Adell has hit .298 with 35 homers and 143 RBIs.  Adell has also stolen 30 bases and has a .361 OBP.

In early 2018 when Adell and Marsh had both started the season in Low-Single-A in Burlington, Marsh was called up to to Inland Empire and was there for close to two weeks before Adell joined him. I asked Adell how he felt when he saw Marsh go ahead of him.  His answer was priceless because it showed the competitive fire he has.

“When I found out Brandon was being called up I was happy for him, He left me in Burlo for a few days, and  I was a little salty about it,” Adell said with a grin. “It’s good though to have a guy that is like my brother who I know has my back it takes pressure off me to know that there someone else that we can rely on.”

Marsh echoed his bond with Adell saying that it is a good motivation.

“It’s a pleasure to play with him (Adell) he is like my brother. We both came straight out of high school and have come up together,” Marsh said. “Jo is a student of the game, he does everything well.He is fun to work with and it helps to get better working with him.”

Although there is some differences in their games both have the five tools that scouts look for which is power, speed, hitting for average, defensive play in the field, and a good arm. Marsh is more well-suited to play the corner outfield spots and Adell is best suited for centerfield, but both of them could be plugged in anywhere in the outfield and be able to shine.

The only issue is that the Angels potentially only have one outfield spot open for the next three years with Justin Upton under contract through 2022 and Mike Trout under contract until 2030.  Adell will most likely make his Angels debut in 2020 and Marsh could also do the same. New manager Joe Maddon will have the task of figuring out a way to incorporate both players into the Angels line-up when they are ready, but this is something he has had to do in both Chicago and Tampa Bay so I’m sure he is up for the challenge.

Brandon Marsh and Jo Adell balling out in Arizona Fall League. Next

An outfield with Marsh, Trout, and Adell could be the best in Angels history in a few years.  We will have to see how things play out. Whatever happens the bond that Marsh and Adell has formed will be on that help them both throughout their days with the Angels.