Nice quick hit on Lou Marson

Baseball America ran an article today talking about some of the better performers on Team USA thus far, and Marson made the short (well, 10) list.

5. Lou Marson, c, Phillies

Marson defended well behind the plate, though he lacked the sub-2.0 pop times and well above-average arm of teammate Taylor Teagarden. But Marson, 22, was impressive at the plate in BP and in games, showing an easy, balanced swing. Though he only had 10 plate appearances while splitting catching duties with Teagarden, Marson showed an easy, balanced swing in BP and in games. He squared up balls with authority, and his outs were generally well-hit balls in play. Marson also has likely the best batting eye on the team, as he drew nearly as many walks (65) as strikeouts (69) this year with Double-A Reading and leads the Eastern League with a .434 on-base percentage.

Even though Mike Arbuckle thinks he stinks, its nice to see BA hyping him up.

43 thoughts on “Nice quick hit on Lou Marson

  1. I’m not familiar with Teagarden – I did notice that he’s 2+ years older than Lou, and isn’t exactly lighting things up at AAA Oklahoma. It’ll be interesting to see how the catching duties are split between the two once the Olympics begin.

  2. Teagarden is one reason there had been talk of the Rangers trading catchers before the deadline although considering one of the bigger parts of the Teixeira trade last year was Saltalamacchia (sp) i would expect that TT was a fairly recent surprise to be this good.

    Great to hear someone likes our prospects!!

  3. I wouldn’t say Arby hates Marson. Fair to say Phillies brass doesn’t want prospects talked up too much, in case they are traded. Phillies never want to unload a player fans like or are looking forward to coming to Philly. If a fan favorite is not to be resigned or traded, as with Schill, Rolen, Abreu management makes darn sure the fans hate him.

  4. Today I asked John Manuel from baseball America about Marson and Donald. He gave the following response:

    John Manuel : (2:16 PM ET ) Thanks for the kind words. Donald and Marson are both top 10-15 prospects in the EL for sure. Donald’s pretty solid at shortstop, not a gold glover or anything, but he doesn’t have to move off short. I think he’s going to be an average big leaguer, with Marson a tick above because he’s sufficient defensively at C (fringy arm) and has a big league bat. He has the better chance to be an all-star because of his offensive upside.

  5. At 22 Marson has time to improve his catching technique. In a few seasons he’ll be less jumpy behind the plate and may even improve his release time when throwing out runners. As long as he shows that sweet swing and exceptional plate discipline, I won’t mind if he’s a bit below average in throwing out runners. A great arm behind the plate can’t make up for the pitcher’s not holding runners on anyway, which may often be the case in AA.

    Great news to hear Donald rated as a top 10-15 EL player as well.

  6. Having watched Marson and Donald in person and Travis D’Arnaud and Freddy Galvis only on Milb-tv games I would project D’Arnaud and Galvis in those positions for the Phils for most of the 2010’s.

  7. Only one play, but he nailed a guy at Durham Bulls Athletic Park Sunday night. The ball was in the dirt just barely, but he scooped it and came up throwing very quickly. The throw was right on a line about 8-10 inches inside the 2B bag. Runner slid right into the tag. His season long performance will have to do with consistency of technique, physical endurance, etc. But there is no diubt in my mind that he has the physical ability to be avg or a little above average in getiing out fast and quick, strong, accurate throws. Sitting in the 2nd row behind home plate, I can also report he a a guy with rock-solid quiet confidence, reminding me of Ryne Sandberg in that respect. All business, expects to excel and holds himself that way–and then executes. He also hit a tracer that shot out to the CF wall for a double like a 3-iron shot. He can drive the ball big time. And he worked each AB carefully.

  8. LOUnacy is sweeping the world! Put on your air masks Beijing, you’re about to get struck with MARmania!

  9. RodeoJones-

    I can dig LOUnacy, but MARmania may be pushing it. I like where your heads at though.

  10. You can call me a LOUnatic, but I don’t feel like waiting around for D’Arnaud, I’ll take Marson in September.

  11. if d’arnaud can make it through the 3 levels that marson has made it through and is still raking at reading then we can worry about that problem. at this point marson is going to have a crack at the catching job in spring training of 09 i think. his presence seems to make jaramillo expendable. we already have a defensive catcher in ruiz, and coste is valuable as a bench guy and backup catcher because he is such a good hitter

  12. Stutes: 6 ip, 2 BB, 3HA, 11SO, 0R, 0ER.

    Are there any good write ups on this guy? I can’t seem to find anything about him? Is he touted at all or just coming out of nowhere?

  13. i dont know how much we can expect out of stutes in the future but i just saw that he was 12-4 with a 4.07 era last year at oregon state, but only gave up 111 hits in 133 innings with 129 k’s

  14. D’Arnaud has a way to go, it’s Lou’s world now and we’re living in it.

    If D’Arnaud tears through the system it’ll be a nice problem to have.

    I was surprised Jaramillo wasn’t moved at the deadline. I could see something this offseason.

  15. Not talking up your prospects is bass ackwards. Most prospects never fulfill the expectations put upon them and hence should be used as trading chips. The big exception to this is small market teams who need to cost-control players as long as they can. The Phils usually have a payroll in the mid-90s, so cost-controlling is a little less important to them. Arbuckle should be talking up prospects big time to try and draw media attention to them to inflate their value come the trading deadline.

  16. “SCOUTING REPORT (3/1): The No. 3 starter on OSU’s 2006 national championship team, Stutes ascended to the No. 1 role for much of 2007 as the Beavers repeated as improbable College World Series champions. He topped the Beavers with 12 wins and 129 strikeouts, but was bumped from the front of the rotation during the stretch run by freshman sensation Jorge Reyes, who earned CWS outstanding player honors. Though Stutes was selected in the eighth round of the 2007 draft, he unexpectedly turned down an offer from the Cardinals and returned for his senior year. His chances of improving his draft position are considered slim as he is a short, unimposing righthander, though he has a quick arm, a good three-pitch mix that includes a 91-92 mph fastball with sink and run, and is a good competitor with a proven track record. The biggest knock on Stutes has been the inconsistency of his curveball, though it has good downward bite when he stays on top of it. He walked 60 in 133 innings last spring and has a history of walking nearly a batter every two innings.—ALLAN SIMPSON
    UPDATE (5/15): Stutes’ gamble to return for his senior year, hoping to improve his draft position, did not pay off. He went just 4-7, 5.32 with 42 walks and 81 strikeouts in 88 innings. He rarely dominated a game, like he had in OSU’s run to consecutive national titles, and suffered from inconsistent command. A fastball/curveball pitcher a year ago, he added a slider and changeup to his repertoire this year, and he tended to work more off his breaking ball than his fastball, which was his dominant pitch a year ago. His fastball was customarily in the 89-92 mph range. Scouts see little upside in Stutes, believing what they saw this year is what he’ll be down the road.—AS”

    This is from PG crosschecker, he’s been dominating in A(SS) & now A ball. It’s great to see so many of the picks from this past draft already doing well.

  17. Damn I just posted what kind of stuff he has before I saw the above post. It seems his curveball is back to form and even if his change and Slider are average that is a great sign.

  18. Stutes and Susdorf both look like legit prospects, not bad for college players drafted in rounds 11 and 19.

  19. i think stutes could keep pitching well if he keeps using his fastball with movement. His curve has promise if he can keep it consistent. Im not sure he needs a slider at this point, i would rather see him concentrate on the fastball curveball combination. His changeup could be a good weapon to work off of as well if he can hone it.

  20. What did Arbuckle say about Marson? I wasn’t aware that the Phillies were talking him down.

    If anything, he seemed to be getting mention in the mainstream press (Jayson Stark, FOXsports) and my assumption was the Phils were behind that.

  21. IIRC, someone asked Arbuckle about calling up Marson, and I think he gave him some backhanded compliments (“he’s hitting around .300” was one of them), and said that if he were called up now, he wouldn’t do any better than Ruiz. He did say that a September callup was a possibility. I think it may have been the Phils’ way of thinking they were sneaky, talking down their top prospect so that other teams wouldn’t be interested in him. I personally think it’s a dumb idea.

    – Jeff

  22. Here was his quote back when the Phillies were going through their losing streak and he was being constantly asked about replacing Ruiz with Marson..

    “Marson is getting close,” Arbuckle said. “We’d like for him from a development standpoint to just continue what he’s been doing at the plate. If you look at the average, you’ll say, ‘What are you talking about?’ But I think from a development standpoint, if we brought him here right now, I’m not sure he would hit that much more than Ruiz is hitting. I’m not sure it’s that big an upgrade.”

    Some read that as a slap against Marson. I take it as Arbuckle trying to stop the media/fan drumbeat of people thinking that Marson was going to come-up and provide an instant upgrade.

  23. When I was at the Team USA game in Durham Sunday (see Anonymous above), they announced Lou as “Lou mar-SAHN.” I thought it was MAR-s’n, rhyming with parson. They made it sound French. Is this the right pronunciation or was the announcer taking stylistic liberties?

  24. If that’s the quote, I wouldn’t say that it’s negative.

    He’s referring to this year…right now, not down the road.

  25. I’m wondering if Jason Donald gets the expanded roster call up to play some 3B if they feel Feliz will be out for an extended period of time. I’d rather make that move then Marson. I’m also growing concerned over Jenkins lack of production as the LH side of the RF platoon.

  26. Hyperbole is allowed here, from time to time. When that quote was made, I believe Ruiz was hitting about .190 for the season. It seems kind of silly to think Marson wouldn’t have been an upgrade over what Ruiz was providing at the time.

    And it follows in a long line of the Phillies de-valuing their own prospects by constantly focusing on what they can’t do, instead of what they can do. Its just like the Cardenas thing. All you ever heard from the Phillies brass was “he’s limited to 2B”, you didn’t hear about his “awesome bat that will play anywhere”. You’d like to think that other teams don’t listen to the stuff teams put out about their own guys, but after a while, it makes you wonder if perception doesn’t become reality.

  27. I think Donald could get a september call-up but would be stunned if they tried to transition him to 3b at the ML level during a pennant race.

    Not fair to the player or to the team.

    If Feliz is out long-term, they will continue with the Dobbs / Bruntlett platoon.

  28. Depends if you actually believe Arbuckle truely thinks that Marson wouldn’t have been an upgrade. IMO, it was more a case of the intended audience of his statement. He was trying to get the press off the back of his starting catcher and probably to ease some concerns from Ruiz that he was about to get replaced.

    But I absolutely agree that the organization has a bad habit of downplaying the abilities of their own prospects and highlighting their weaknesses (Utley’s defense, etc.)

    Maybe they are trying to save $$$ by delaying their arrival with the big club by convincing the fans and media that they just aren’t ready yet.

    Or maybe they just have the same mind-set of a large segment of their fanbase who also seem to focus on player’s weaknesses and shortcomings (Howard’s K’s, Burrell’s speed, Kendrick’s stuff, etc.) rather than their strengths…

  29. Not sure that I agree with you 3UP on transitioning to 3B. In general if you can handle short you can handle 3b Bruntlett is case in point. I would actually contend that Donald is not your traditional rangey SS so he may benefit from the move. I could be wrong either way but I do like his OPS.

  30. I think Donald gets called up if Feliz is still hurting. He would be a better option as a bat off the bench and a back up at SS/2B then Cervanek and that would ease Cholly’s mind about using Bruntlett in the devloping 3B platoon.

    I still predict Donald will be starting at 3B for Reading next year.

  31. I think Donald will definitely be called up when the rosters expand, but I don’t think its likely he’s going to get starts at 3B. I think he’ll be used as a pinch hitter, and possibly get a few reps at 3B and SS late in games to give guys a rest in a blowout. But he won’t be thrown into the middle of a pennant race in close games at a position he’s never played.

    The more likely solution is him going to the Arizona Fall League and playing 3B.

  32. Frankly, it would be assbackwards to publicly humiliate Ruiz by proclaiming that a AA player is about to take his job. Don’t worry, Ruiz knows the score without Arbuckle saying so to Marcus Hayes. Moreover, I would hate to be the rookie who walks into a big-league clubhouse after management just gushed about how I’m a huge upgrade over the guy whose job I just took.

    Further, no one on this site can speak with any authority about whether being honest to the local media actually devalues a player (if I were an opposing team exec looking to make a deal, I sure as hell wouldn’t take Arbuckle’s words to the local media as any sort of authority.) so this line of harping seems a bit frouthy mouthed, as it would really seem to be a reaction to Arbuckle not stroking the fetish of those of us (me included) who like to follow Phillies prospects.

  33. Thanks for the clarification on the quote – I missed that the irst time around.

    It was pretty stupid to say, directly comparing a prospect to someone on the 25-man squad is a no-no. Hopefully, it was just stupid phrasing rather than an accurate guide to their opinion.

  34. D Mar,

    I absolutely agree that Donald can probably handle should be given a look at 3b. Just don’t see it happening at the big league level during a pennant race.

    As PP said, they most likely make the move in the fall league or starting in the minors next season..

  35. No front office person would ever say something as stupid as “Our C in AA is better than our C in the majors and is about to take his job.” I’m not sure that you could find an example of an exec gushing to the press about how their minor leaguers are huge upgrades over their major leaguers. No one here suggested that Arbuckle should have said that. What Arbuckle should have said is something like “We have tremendous confidence that Lou will someday be an All-Star caliber catcher, but at this point he still needs some refinement.” If you look at his comment, he comes off as very tepid about Marson, who is probably the Phils best prospect.

    While I cannot tell you for a fact that a front office’s comments about their minor leaguers to the media affects other teams’ opinions, you cannot tell me that they don’t.

    I can tell you that if you have a valuable asset to trade you should always make sure everyone knows just how valuable it is. One way to make sure your good prospects get attention is positive mentions in the press. Prospects have value and a good front office always wants to maximize the perceived value of their prospects.

    It does seem that Arbuckle was trying to shake off complaints from media and fans about Ruiz. However, he did not have to make Marson look inferior while doing it. For teams that have not scouted Marson as a potential trade target, this gives them less incentive to do so and hence lowers his potential value come trade time.

  36. May be a discussion point for another time, but I notice everybody talking about who is going to be put on the 40-man roster for a September call-up. I noticed the Phillies only have 1 spot left on the 40-man. I know there are guys we’d LIKE to see dropped off of the roster (a certain individual with the initials AE comes to mind), but realistically what do we think will happen? Personally, I don’t see Marson coming up since JJ is already on the roster and would be the third catcher. Maybe Donald and almost certainly Golson. Thoughts?

  37. When Donald gets back from the Olympics, why wouldn’t the team put him at third and let him get a couple of weeks there. It’s the same side of the infield and needs less range. If he’s got the arm, there is no reason he can’t play third. Every shortsop who has more than a pop gun arm would be fine at third base.

  38. Boston Phan – you write about Lou marson’s trade value, his perceived trade value, and his potential suitors come trade time. Just one little thing; he won’t be traded. Have you seen Carlos Ruiz hit lately?

  39. Forrest,

    You’re right, Ruiz is not the catcher of the future. Marson looks like he could be an all-star. But I would have traded a package headed by him for CC.

  40. I don’t get it. Marson is the same guy who was recruited by major schools to be a QB, right? His arm is just fine, better than average if anything.

  41. Someone please find me an option other than Jenkins. I like him he seems like a cool guy but he just doesn’t have it anymore. No power, too many GDP’s and strike outs and he can’t let the ball get deep and go the other way when needed.

  42. DMAR how about his ourfield play he can’t throw and is slow.This guy is one of the worst signing we ever had right behind eaton and that outfield who batted once and never played again can’t remember his name.

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