Winter Work Paying Off For Yankee Farmhand Matt Marsh
To say the Tampa Yankees closer, Matt Marsh, is a friend of Off The Bench is a bit of an understatement. I grew up with the kid, know his family, and my mother and uncle met up with him over the offseason to enjoy a college football game. There’s something about the bond forged in the dugout during all those U-16 tournaments that we played across the Southeast that is indescribable. I mention all this to make clear that I’m biased. I root for Matt. Hard. OTBB even published an extended interview with him this winter.
When I heard that he planned to train hard this offseason at a facility in the DC area where a teammate had trained recently and gained a few miles per hour, I was excited. I knew Matt’s history of arm troubles had robbed him of the potential velocity that was evident from the time we were 12. I knew that he had spent time at 3 different colleges on his way to being an undrafted right handed reliever out of Liberty University.
From my position as a blogger and baseball nerd, I know the success rate of that type of player. I know 24-year old relievers in A-ball are often labelled “non-prospects.” They’re usually organizational filler that take up space on rosters, and help minor league teams compete through their rigorous schedule.
I know that often times these guys are the footnote in scouting notebooks. They’re the guys that the real prospects are supposed to hit home runs off of. Matt’s baseball resume is impressive, but until this year was just impressive enough to be good enough to face the million dollar bonus babies, theJorge Mateo’s of the world.
But all that just makes me more excited as I regularly check Matt’s baseball-reference page. He started the season as a closer for the high-A Yankees.