It’s very rare for a player to make the leap from the Minors to the Majors without encountering some sort of rough patch. Brandon Marsh — who was the Los Angeles Angels No. 1 prospect — faced significant struggles in his first glimpse of the show.
In his first 20 games at the MLB level, Marsh slashed just .143/.229/.206 with 26 strikeouts in 70 plate appearances. He made up for it with stellar defense, but those numbers are still extremely hard to get behind. However, something clicked for him after a particularly rough stretch.
After putting together just one hit in a seven-game span, Marsh caught fire. In his last 10 games, he’s slashing .367/.441/.433. And against the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday, he missed his first big league home run by a matter of inches on a fan interference call.
Joe Maddon was upset at the umpires for this call, mainly due to the fact that they awarded him a double when he was already nearing third base when the interference occurred, according to Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com:
“I knew it was fan interference, but I couldn’t believe they didn’t award Marsh third base,” Maddon said. “It would’ve been literally impossible to have thrown him out at third base.”
Maddon is correct with his assessment of the situation. Marsh absolutely should have been awarded third base. The Angels young outfielder ended up being stranded at second on a Jack Mayfield strikeout.
Regardless, a hit like that has pointed towards a larger trend of Marsh becoming more confident at the plate. Earlier in Tuesday’s game, he hit a line drive RBI single to score Shohei Ohtani.
Marsh was always a disciplined batter, even when he was striking out. Now, he is showing strides with bat-to-barrel accuracy and getting some power behind his swings. It’s exactly what he needed to become a Major League-level hitter.
Jo Adell credits Mike Trout for grand slam
The Angels young outfield tandem of Marsh and Adell showed their best stuff on Tuesday. Marsh had his 2-for-5 night with the RBI and the double, while Adell won the game with a two-out, ninth inning grand slam.
Adell spoke about the grand slam after the game, saying that it was advice from Mike Trout that gave him what he needed to make that happen. Trout told him to always stay on the fastball and adjust to everything else, and it was a 97 mph sinking fastball that Adell took 416 feet.