Part of the thrill for many prospector is trying to be one of the first collectors to find the next Mike Trout. Where better to look than within the system that Trout came up in?
Considering that the Millville Meteor may be the best player since Mickey Mantle, that may be an unfair comparison for twenty-three year old Brandon Marsh. He may not be Mike Trout, but Marsh has provided fans and collectors with a lot of reasons to be optimistic about the Angel’s future outfield. Drafted in the second round out of Buford High School, Marsh has shown consistent growth during his rise through the minors. In 2018 he slashed .256/.359/.408 combined in Single and High A. The Georgia native improved upon those numbers the next year, hitting .287/.368/.408 in the Arizona League and Double A. He has also shown considerable skill in the field. Baseball America has graded their number thirty-eight overall prospect as a sixty runner and sixty fielder with a seventy arm (out of eighty). Marsh’s biggest tool is his standout athleticism. Keith Law describes him as one of the best overall athletes in Los Angeles’ system and he moonlighted as wide receiver for his high school football team. With such a well rounded background and continued steady improvement, there are evaluators that feel the 6’4″ 215 lb. Bufford, Georgia native is a future All-Star.
For all the upside that Marsh exhibits, the main concern regarding the lefty is his injury history. He’s been plagued by some minor issues throughout his three seasons on the farm. His introduction to professional baseball was delayed by a back issue after he was drafted. A sprained ankle cost him a month of playing time in 2019 and in 2020 he suffered an elbow strain as well. None of these setbacks are cause for alarm individually but together they present a pattern. Marsh is still in his early twenties though so these issues shouldn’t compound too much. Even so, it would be reassuring to see him go injury free for one full season.
Marsh’s injury bug may have tamped down his card values early on but collectors are starting to come around on the Angels number one prospect. His total sales numbers suffered the expected offseason dip in November and December but rebounded in a strong way the first month of the new year. The average price of his 2018 Bowman Chrome autograph has increased in lockstep with his sales numbers as well. During the 2020 season, which Marsh spent at the Halos alternate training site, his card value held firm between $25 – $30. With spring training only weeks away now, the average of his last ten sales is $37.47. The sixtieth overall pick of the 2016 draft will start the 20201 season in Triple A and, barring any more time on the injury, should make his big league debut before long. Marsh should provide a much needed offensive boost for a club that has struggled to be competitive in recent years. Being paired with the best player in generations and a manager that has a history of success developing young teams, there is good reason to expect Marsh to blossom on the major league level. Expect him to be an exciting player to watch and a strong addition to any collection.