On August 2nd, the Philadelphia Phillies and the Los Angeles Angels agreed to a trade that would send former Angels top prospect, Brandon Marsh to Philadelphia. At the time of the trade, the Phillies center field situation was quite the question mark with Odubel Herrera getting playing time as was Matt Vierling and Mickey Moniak when he was healthy. Keep in mind that the price tag to get Marsh in red pinstripes was, some may say, hefty as they traded away promising catcher prospect Logan O’Hoppe, who is now the Angels top prospect, but ll things considered, the Marsh trade in early August seems like it is going to work out for the Phillies moving forward.
At the time when Marsh got traded to Philadelphia, his offensive numbers with the Angels were not the best they could have been. With a slash line of .226/.284/.353/.637, the fans of Philadelphia were not pleased with the acquisition. But with a great hitting coach in Kevin Long, Marsh improved at the plate immediately. Post-Angels trade, Marsh completed his 2022 campaign with a new and improved slash line of .288/.319/.455/.733. In that 2022 campaign, he delivered a huge moment to the fans in the NLDS against the Braves where he launched a ball into orbit, surely making his mark in Phillies playoff history.
BRANDON MARSH 3 RUN HOME RUN PHILADELPHIA IS GOING NUTS— Ben Verlander (@BenVerlander) October 15, 2022
Marsh still strikes out a lot with a 29.7% strikeout percentage, but it is not the offensive skill set that makes Marsh a significant piece on the Phillies roster. Marsh is quick, the Georgia native is one of the quickest players in baseball with him being in the 89th percentile of sprint speed on Baseball Savant. This makes him a good player in center field which the Phillies have struggled to find. His not making an error in center with the Phillies is what they expect once again in the 2023 season.
It was mentioned earlier that Marsh struggled with strikeouts during the 2022 season and that is one of the few knocks on him. Other than that, Marsh quickly improved at the plate and stayed consistent in the field, which is all a team can ask for. If Marsh can improve his plate approach and if he can add some power to his swing, he can begin to turn heads in the front office.
Is Marsh the Phillies center fielder of the future? It is hard to tell since the Phillies recently drafted Justin Crawford in the first round of this summer’s draft and Crawford primarily plays in center field. With Marsh’s contract expiring in 2028, one would think he would be the Phillies guy but with how aggressive the front office is, it may be too premature to say that he may not play out that whole contract in Philadelphia. It is up to Marsh to improve at the plate even more to secure his spot on the roster for years to come.