Angels outfield prospect Brandon Marsh is battling a left elbow strain that could keep him out all spring and possibly into the season, according to manager Joe Maddon (via Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com). Marsh suffered the injury while trying to make a diving catch last Sunday, but the good news is that it’s to his non-throwing elbow.
Even if healthy, Marsh wouldn’t have been in position to make the Angels’ Opening Day roster, but this is still a disappointing development for him and the team. The 22-year-old has emerged as one of baseball’s top farmhands since the Angels selected him in the second round of the 2016 draft. MLB.com ranks Marsh as the 79th-best prospect in the sport and notes that he has an opportunity to debut in the majors sometime during the upcoming season.
So far, Marsh hasn’t even made it to the Triple-A level, and this injury will only make it more difficult for him to get to the majors in the near term. Marsh, though, was impressive last year in his first taste of Double-A ball, where he batted .300/.383/.428 with seven home runs and 18 stolen bases in 412 plate appearances. It remains to be seen when or if he’ll emerge as a major league option for the Angels, however, considering the team’s loaded outfield picture. The Angels have the best player in baseball, center fielder Mike Trout, another proven veteran in left fielder Justin Upton and an elite prospect who’s nearing the majors in Jo Adell as the most prominent outfielders in the organization.
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